Having started with a canal almost impassable with hawthorn, here’s an overview of our considerable progress to date, and our objectives over the coming years. The Wendover Canal restoration project consists of three phases:
Phase 1 – Completed
Grand Union Canal to Little Tring (1997 to 2005) is the 2km length from Bulbourne to Little Tring, which has been completed and has full navigation for narrowboats. Restoration involved the rebuilding of the brick-faced bridge at Little Tring, but had the advantage that only a quarter-mile section of canal needed to be restored.
Phase 2 – In Progress
Little Tring to Buckland Wharf (2005 to 2025) is the 2.5km centre section. It used to be almost impassable with 6 metre high hawthorn as shown here – believe it or not, the muddy mess is not the canal bottom, it’s the path where you can now all walk much more easily. The canal itself should be in the darkness on the right. This is all now gaining full accessibility, biodiversity and navigation by narrowboats. We have 3 videos showing progress on this section, the most recent by Boyd Williams is available at this link . Other recent videos of this are on the YouTube links below. More videos are on a separate page here.
Phase 3 – Future
Buckland to Wendover (2023 to 2028) is the 6.5km western length from Buckland Wharf to Wendover which will be restored in two phases.
- Smaller craft such as rowing boats, canoes, kayaks and trail boats (2023-5)
- Narrowboats to Wendover (2024 to 2030).
The entire 11km length of the canal will also, crucially, include restoration of the towpath in order to maximise usage by pedestrians, runners, cyclists and users of smaller craft. It will also include other attractions to encourage people to visit, learn about the canal’s heritage and enjoy the surrounding environment.