Putting Water at the Heart of our Community

We want to make the city of Derby and its surrounding area a better and happier place to live. We want to safeguard the heritage of the area for our children and to encourage more visitors to visit this area and enjoy our unique hospitality. We want to enhance the connectivity of our village communities and provide safe and healthy routes to our cities.

We believe that the most effective way to achieve this is to embrace and improve our connection to water, whether the River Derwent running through Derby City or the Derby and Sandiacre Canal through the outlying communities.

We plan to achieve these aims by:

  • Restoring the Derby Canal on its original route as closely as possible
  • Creating a River Derwent route from Pride Park to Derby City Centre; connecting the original canal with the iconic Silk Mill and our Heritage
  • Creating a boat lift – the Derby Arm – to allow boats to access the river route from the canal in Pride Park
  • Establishing a Visitor Centre and other attractions around the Boat Lift and in the City Centre

Achievement of these aims will deliver:

  • Enhanced economic activity through increased visitor numbers and spend per capita
  • A better quality of life; as the impact of water mitigates the challenges of modern times
  • Development of the river boundaries that is more inclusive of river activities
  • An improved environment that provides habitat to encourage wildlife improvement and diversity and a better open air offering available to all users
  • More closely connected communities

We are seeking to engage a wide and varied audience by implementing continual improvements through the introduction of multi user routes, water-borne transport, canal side developments, and engaging local communities bordering the route. The ability to reinstate a sustainable canal corridor as a green recreational amenity is the cornerstone to bringing these waters back to navigation.

Funding for these objectives will be derived from a variety of sources dependent on the nature of projects within the restoration. Funding will be consist of a mixture of:

  • Individual subscriptions
  • Grants for Lottery and other organizations
  • Commercial capital, where returns from the development are clear and sufficient and
  • Loan capital
  • The use of our strong membership base in undertaking physical, administrative and managerial work

The timeframe for delivery is now dependent on raising finance following the successful achievement of Outline Planning Permission for the whole canal restoration in 2011 and the completion of many assessments and surveys of engineering requirements.

Restoration Plan

The Trust’s Development Committee are working on plans to see the canal restored to a fully navigable route with an associated multi-user towpath to enable access to all. As part of this work a submission has been made to have the canal route included in the Derbyshire County Council’s strategic infrastructure plan. This submission details the reasons and benefits for restoration and the high level costs of restorations and potential funding sources.

A copy of the Trust’s submission can be downloaded below (around 5MBs):

Or alternatively a smaller PDF version (only 0.5 MBs):