Search

‘Norfolk’s industrial archaeological gem is coming back to life’ - canal trust chairman

A boat on the canal with a walker: Picture: Julie Kelleher

A boat on the canal with a walker: Picture: Julie Kelleher

Archant

An important but little-known part of Norfolk’s heritage will take centre stage during a weekend aimed at encouraging people to enjoy a restored attraction.

Everyone is invited to Ebridge Mill Pond, part of the North Walsham and Dilham Canal, to take part in a range of activities and to find out more about successful restoration work on the waterway.

The North Walsham and Dilham Canal Trust, which is organising the open days, also hopes visitors will sign a petition supporting future improvement work on the canal.

Event highlights will include model boats in action on the pond, walks beside the restored canal, displays of objects found during restoration work, including coins, bottles and clay pipes, and vintage tractors.

The waterway, nearly nine miles long, is Norfolk’s only sailing canal with locks and was opened in 1826. It runs from Antingham, near North Walsham, to Wayford Bridge, near Stalham.

Wherries would sail its length transporting cargo to and from the mills and communities along its route.

Ivan Cane, the trust’s interim chairman, said: “The restoration of a canal is not just for boaters. A restored canal corridor, as seen on the Ebridge reach, becomes a community asset, and a tourist attraction.

“The permissive paths, running alongside this stretch of water, are giving people the chance to relax, walk, picnic, pond dip, watch wildlife, fish or just watch the passing canoeists or sail boats. Norfolk’s industrial archaeological gem is coming back to life.”

The canal’s decline began with the arrival of the railway. It was last sailed by a wherry in 1934 and over the following decades became choked with vegetation.

Many stretches were completely dry and its infrastructure of locks and bridges was crumbling by 2001 when volunteers from the East Anglian Waterways Association (EAWA) launched what have become regular working parties to rescue the canal.

The EAWA’s success led to the formation of the Canal Trust in 2008. Work carried out by supporters means that a two-and-a-half mile stretch of the canal, from Ebridge Mill Pond to Swafield Bridge, is in use once more.

The open days are on Saturday, June 3 (11am-5pm) and Sunday, June 4 (10am-4pm).

Other popular content

Yesterday, 11:50

A North Walsham mother-of-two has been left housebound after having her motability car taken away.

Another Norfolk town looks like it is about to get its first branch of Costa Coffee.

Yesterday, 08:51

Forget what you think you know about charity shops - here’s a new spin on an old idea.

A damning dossier compiled by a senior whistleblower from the region’s ambulance trust has claimed at least 40 patients died or were harmed due to delays over Christmas and New Year - including one person who froze to death.

Most Read

Yesterday, 11:50

A North Walsham mother-of-two has been left housebound after having her motability car taken away.

Read more

Another Norfolk town looks like it is about to get its first branch of Costa Coffee.

Read more
United Kingdom
Yesterday, 08:51

Forget what you think you know about charity shops - here’s a new spin on an old idea.

Read more
Joseph Ballard

A damning dossier compiled by a senior whistleblower from the region’s ambulance trust has claimed at least 40 patients died or were harmed due to delays over Christmas and New Year - including one person who froze to death.

Read more
Clive Lewis
16:17

Snow could be on its way to Norfolk on Sunday as the temperatures plummet to below freezing overnight.

Read more
West Norfolk

Local Weather

Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 3°C

min temp: 0°C

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition

Image
Read the North Norfolk News e-edition today
E-edition

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter