On Saturday 18th September a team of volunteers from Caldon & Uttoxeter Canals Trust and IWA North Staffordshire & South Cheshire Branch were on hand at Crumpwood in Staffordshire, to talk to visitors during a self-guided walk along the Uttoxeter Canal between Alton and Denstone.
Good news - the planning application which would have blocked the future restoration of the Uttoxeter Canal at Froghall was unanimously rejected by SMDC's Planning Applications Committee this afternoon.
Rupert Smedley represented CUCT and IWA as one of the objectors speaking against the application, and there was a very robust recommendation for refusal by the planning officers.
The developer recently submitted a number of fairly detailed additional documents rubbishing the viability of the restoration and suggesting that it can be ignored, or that the restored canal could take a different route through Froghall. Unfortunately this is broadly untrue. The canal could not drop into the river through the area as it is too narrow, windy and fast flowing, even under normal conditions. It also regularly floods and at time this can be 2m or more.
Sir David and Lady Suchet have joined Staffordshire Moorlands residents, parish councils and canal volunteers in voicing their concerns about development proposals that would prevent further restoration of the Uttoxeter Canal at Froghall and kill opportunities to extend safe walking and cycling routes, create wildlife corridors and grow sustainable tourism.
A planning application has recently been submitted for land directly south of the basin at the start of the Uttoxeter Canal in Froghall. This application puts 49 new houses between the basin and nearby A52. Based on the information provided we can confirm that, if approved, the development would block all possible alignments for the canal through Froghall, and would permanently end our ongoing project to restore the Uttoxeter Canal.
Members of the Caldon & Uttoxeter Canals Trust last night joined in with the Trust's first online AGM. Having been postponed due to COVID-19 restrictions, the committee decided that using Zoom technology would allow the meeting to take place and meet the requirements of our constitution. Around 15 members took part in the meeting from their homes using computers and phones.
In 1970, a film "The Caldon Canal - a cut above the rest" was made about the Caldon Canal, for the then Caldon Canal Society. This follows a boat from Etruria along the the navigable section of the canal to Leek, then takes a look at the still unrestored canal from Hazelhurst Junction to Froghall.
You can view the 18 minute film on this website
Steve Wood recently gave an online talk about the Uttoxeter Canal at the invitation of Inland Waterways Association Shrewsbury & North Wales Branch. The Webinar can now be viewed via the IWA YouTube channel.