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Trust plans to transform old waterway

AgfaPhoto
AgfaPhoto

A local canal trust has taken the next step to transform a disused canal into a top visitor attraction.

Derby and Sandiacre Canal Trust has bought six derelict cottages overlooking a stretch of waterway in Draycott that it is planning to restore.

The cottages are at the start of the Draycott ‘Golden Mile’ between Hopwell Road and Derby Road – the first stretch of the former 13-mile waterway.

Detailed plans and feasibility studies will now be drawn up for the future use of the cottages near Hopwell Road which cost £175,000.

Chris Madge, chair of Derby and Sandiacre Canal Trust’s restoration committee, said: “These cottages are some of the very few remaining pieces of the Derby Canal heritage and we have had our eye on them for some time.

“Having secured the deal, we hope to have some firm plans in place very soon so that we can raise the money for the restoration work.

“We are working to plot the history of the cottages to add to what we have already gathered about life on and around the canal which will be included in an interactive exhibition at the new visitor centre on this site.

“The Draycott Golden Mile appeal is really gathering pace and I believe this is what convinced the previous owner to part with the cottages.

“Since launching the fundraising appeal in May, we already have nearly £40,000 in pledges which clearly demonstrates public support for our proposals to reinstate the canal itself.

“We need further pledges of support from individuals, businesses and organisations at this stage which we will then call upon when the funding target has been reached and the 12-week canal construction work is scheduled to begin.”

The buildings will also be a base for the trust as well as heritage and leisure businesses.