The Wey & Arun Canal Trust held an exhibition at Winn Hall in Dunsfold on Sunday 6th November, in order to give local residents the chance to learn more about the Trust and be consulted about its proposed work in the Dunsfold and Alfold area.
Dunsfold and Alfold are at the centre of the original canal route, which is often described as 'London's Lost Route to the Sea' and as such the villages are of great significance to the Trust and its work. Planning applications to improve the stretch of canal between the Three Compasses Bridge and Tickner's Heath in Alfold are currently in the early stages, including the addition of a new boat house, slipway and landing stage in order for the Trust to run public boat trips in the area. A similar development in Loxwood has already been hugely successful, benefiting local residents by improving tourism and leisure opportunities as well as generating much needed support for the work of the Wey & Arun Canal Trust itself.
On November 6th, the local visitors from Alfold and Dunsfold proved to be actively enthusiastic about the scheme, with over 150 visitors to the exhibition, where details of plans for the local reach of canal were on display. The highlight of the day was the official opening of the exhibition by VIP guest Councillor Richard Gates, who delivered an extremely supportive opening speech in his capacity as the Mayor of Waverley. County and parish councillors also came along and expressed interest.
Wey & Arun Canal Trust representatives were on hand throughout the event, giving visitors a chance to discuss the plans in greater depth. The opportunity to share views and concerns about the proposed works was open to all in the form of a short questionnaire which visitors were invited to fill out as part of the consultation. Crucially all responses received so far indicate support in principle for the restoration of this part of the canal.
The Trust was extremely pleased to receive such a positive response, and wishes to extend its thanks to all who attended for showing such strong support for the restoration of an important part of the village's history and a wonderful asset to the local landscape. Anyone who wishes to learn more about the work of restoring the Wey & Arun Canal or to find out more about how they can help this worthy cause is encouraged to visit www.weyandarun.co.uk
for further information.
Further information about the Wey & Arun Canal Trust is available from the Trust's office, on 01403 752403.
Notes for Editors
Further information is available from Sally Schupke, email@example.com
, 01483 560543
The Wey & Arun Canal Trust
The Wey & Arun Canal, "London's lost route to the sea" was originally opened in 1816 between the River Wey at Shalford, near Guildford, and Pallingham, near Pulborough, the head of navigation of the River Arun. It closed in 1871, due to railway competition. Since the 1970s the 23-mile waterway has been the subject of a campaign by volunteers led by the Wey & Arun Canal Trust to restore the route to navigation. Work has been undertaken in a number of locations, most notably the stretch near the Sussex/Surrey border at Loxwood. Over two miles in length, this includes five working locks, two public road crossings, an aqueduct, two farm bridges, and numerous minor works, all built or rebuilt through voluntary effort. Boat trips are available on this stretch, onboard several craft, including the 50-seater electrically-powered Wiggonholt.