Call for community groups to “adopt” a slice of Hackney’s canal and river

The Canal and River Trust is appealing to communities in Hackney to adopt a one mile stretch of the Regent’s Canal or the River Lee in a bid to transform the capital’s waterways.

Across London, several stretches of waterway have already been formally adopted by local community groups, from scout groups to waterside residents.

Participants are being asked to record and improve wildlife habitats, maintain towpaths, fundraise and hold educational events and would be able to use the space for barbeques and social events. The campaign comes a year after the Canal and River Trust took over 2,000 miles of canals and rivers from British Waterways in the largest ever single transfer of state assets to the voluntary sector.

Brian Fender, chair of the Trust’s London Waterway Partnership said: “Anniversaries are a good time to celebrate and thank the hard work of volunteers and partners.

“It’s easy to forget that 500 miles of canals were lost in the last century because not enough people cared and too many people took them for granted.

“This should act as a reminder that it doesn’t matter how much money, time and effort we all invest in caring for our precious waterways, they will only survive in the long term where local communities take pride in them and help us improve them.”

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