Wrenbury canal liftbridge new boater control pedestal Darren Spann

The historic canal lift bridge in Wrenbury, near Nantwich has undergone a £150,000 upgrade to give it modern safety controls.

The work has taken two months to complete and means easier operation for boaters on the Llangollen Canal.

It also introduces extra security measures for motorists using the single track road bridge between Nantwich Road and Cholmondeley Road.

The manual swing arm barrier, which stops traffic during a boat crossing, has been replaced by an automated drop-arm barrier at both ends of the bridge.

New waterside safety fencing has been erected and a new bridge control pedestal, installed on the towpath side, will make it easier and safer for boaters to raise the automated lift bridge.

Constructed more than 200 years ago, the picturesque Llangollen Canal is one of the most popular leisure destinations on the Canal and River Trust’s 2,000-mile waterway network.

Each year, thousands of boaters cruise the 44-mile scenic route between its terminus in Llangollen and the junction with the Shropshire Union Canal at Hurleston, Nantwich.

The Wrenbury Lift Bridge project, delivered by contractors AmcoGiffen, started at the beginning of November and was completed the week before Christmas.

Darren Spann, project manager for the Canal & River Trust, said: “This is a busy crossing point for both boats and cars so it is vital the lift bridge operates with modern safety standards and is kept in good working order.

“Wrenbury Lift Bridge (no 20) is one of a number of distinctive drawbridge-style crossings on this narrow canal, which allow the road to remain at the same height as the canal.

“Originally built to carry coal, iron and limestone, the Llangollen Canal has now reinvented itself as a leisure destination and a haven for wildlife.

“Modern canals offer an amazing, tranquil space, where everything slows down – a great place to escape the pressures of modern life.

“We know from research that people are happier and more relaxed when they’re by water, and activities such as walking, cycling, boating and fishing improve people’s mental and physical well-being.

“The pandemic lockdown has brought the amazing value of accessible and local waterways into even greater focus, so keeping the nation’s 200-year-old canal network fit for purpose is vitally important for everyone.”

For more information on the Canal & River Trust’s vital winter waterway repair programme, public open days and volunteering opportunities, visit https://canalrivertrust.org.uk

Wrenbury canal liftbridge new boater control pedestal Darren Spann

Wrenbury canal liftbridge – new boater control pedestal and Darren Spann

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