Express & Star

Nine miles of canal towpaths across Walsall to be revamped

Work is being carried out to improve around nine miles of canal towpaths across Walsall.

After the improvements were made to the canal towpaths

Funded through the Walsall and Bloxwich Town Deal, Walsall Council has been working with the Canal & River Trust on the project.

Work started in the spring and is due to be completed early next year, with some stretches of the canal already finished.

Before and after photos show the huge improvement that the scheme has made.

Before the improvements were carried out

Mayor of the West Midlands Andy Street recently paid a visit to part of Rushall Canal along with deputy leader of Walsall Council Councillor Adrian Andrew to have a look at the progress that has been made.

Councillor Andrew said: “It’s great to be able to come back and see the huge difference that this work has made.

"We visited this section of Rushall canal back in March, and at that point the towpaths were muddy and full of puddles.

"Now you can walk or cycle down the canal with ease, and it looks much more appealing too.

“I want to thank Canal & River Trust for their hard work and expertise, without which we couldn’t deliver these sorts of improvements.”

James Dennison, development and partnerships manager for Canal & River Trust, said: “The towpath improvements are much needed around Walsall, and will mean people can use the canals more regularly to walk and cycle around the borough.

"We’ve over-delivered on the original plans, increasing the length of towpath improvements and the feedback we’ve had has been really positive.

“The scheme has had its challenges, but despite that we are on track and confident in what we have delivered.”

The canal improvements are part of a wider active travel and connectivity scheme, which aims to improve cycling and walking connections between Bloxwich high street, Walsall town centre and local employment sites.

The aim is to increase opportunities for residents to travel into and out of the borough for work and leisure.

Walsall and Bloxwich Town Deal will also see improvements to public spaces including parks, improved walking and cycling facilities through Bloxwich town centre, investments into adult and community learning as well as the creation of centres dedicated to supporting entrepreneurs and creative industries.