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Friends of the Cromford Canal logoFriends of the Cromford Canal

Pinxton-Smotherfly canal approved

A new section of canal near Pinxton could take shape within the next couple of years. Planning consent has been granted to turn a river diversion channel, created during surface mining on the Smotherfly site, into a waterway more than a kilometre long to link with the existing canal at Pinxton.

The channel was to be filled in, but the Friends of the Cromford Canal sought to retain the channel as a canal, and Derbyshire County Council allowed an extension to UK COAL�s restoration plans so that the application could be determined. There are some sensitive environmental issues involved, but also some flood relief benefits expected from the plans, and it has taken 20 months to secure consent for a scheme which crosses local authority boundaries and this varies a restoration plan agreed some years ago.

The channel which will be partly filled-in, landscaped and then filled with waterPatrick Morriss, Chairman of the Friends of the Cromford Canal, a charitable trust that aims to restore the whole canal from Langley Mill to Cromford including the �arm� from Ironville to Pinxton, said this was a great boost to the hopes of full restoration. �If the mining was started today, restoring the canal would have been part of the reclamation scheme, but 20 years ago the benefits of regenerating our waterways were not fully recognised. They are now.� Mr

Morriss added, �There�s a lot to do before this section can be connected to the main canal system and we see boats arriving again in Pinxton, but we think that in itself this stretch of water will add to the recreational opportunities in the area. It would have been a great shame just to fill in this channel and obliterate the line of the canal.�

Further information: FCC Chairman Pat Morriss 01773 742895 The channel which will be partly filled-in, landscaped and then filled with water.

Hugh Potter