Relief and excitement over £154,900 boost for heritage canal trust

Dudley's canal caves will continue to be explored after a lifeline grant was given to the trust that runs the attraction.

Members of the Dudley Canal and Tunnel Trust are delighted to receive a grant
Members of the Dudley Canal and Tunnel Trust are delighted to receive a grant

The Dudley Canal and Tunnel Trust received £154,900 in funding from the Government’s Culture Recovery Fund for Heritage.

Trust chief executive Traci Dix-Williams said news of the funding had been met with relief and excitement and spoke about what would be done with the funding.

She said: “It helps protect jobs, develop our business with some new offers and lets us pay our bills and put in place recommendations made by the consultants we have worked with.

“As we cannot go into the caverns till May, due to them being classed as an indoor venue, we have launched a new Explorer Boat.

“It means people can blow off the cobwebs of lockdown and get out and explore what has changed in the area and along the canals.”

Mrs Dix-Williams said the relief at gaining the funding was due to concerns about what could have been lost if the centre had been unable to reopen.

She said: “We only opened for 15 weeks in 2020 and we were aware that this was not sustainable. We have been worried for the continuation of the heritage we are guardians for, as if we are not here how will the unique caverns, mines and tunnels continue to be reserved and accessible for the public?

"Everything is in place and we just need visitors who are confident to come out and who want to support attractions and businesses such as ours.”

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