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Wilts & Berks Canal campaign boosted by sponsored walk

THE restoration of a local waterway has received another big boost following a recent sponsored walk. melksham, wiltshire, wilts and berks canal, wilts and berks canal trust,

The Wilts & Berks Canal Trust received £1,218 from the fun challenge, which attracted around 130 supporters of all ages. The 10 mile trek followed the old line of the waterway through open countryside between Chippenham and Melksham, ending at The Bell Inn, Lacock, before returning along the same route.

The charity has now received all of the sponsorship money from the May event and presented it to local volunteers during their latest workparty. Event organiser Peter Williams said, “This was the 10th anniversary of the walk so we were delighted to be joined by so many people.

“They are always amazed by the rate of restoration from one year to the next, with longer lengths being dredged and refilled with water. They can also see how much the towpath has been improved and how many structures have been rebuilt.

“The biggest difference this time was the restoration of the wharf at the bottom of the flight of locks which will make it so much easier to launch tripboats and other craft.

“We look forward to seeing even more supporters next year!”

Derek Flexer is chairman of the Melksham, Chippenham & Calne branch of the charity. He said, “We are sincerely grateful to Peter and his team of volunteers who help to make the sponsored walk one of our biggest fundraising events of the year. The money will be used to support our local workparties which are steadily bringing the canal back to life.”

The aim of the Wilts & Berks Canal Trust is to restore the waterway from the Kennet & Avon Canal near Melksham to the Thames & Severn Canal near Cricklade and the River Thames near Abingdon, connecting Chippenham, Calne, Royal Wootton Bassett and Swindon. Visit www.melkshamwater way.org.uk