MP backs charity status for British Waterways
Local MP Andrew Bridgen has welcomed news that British Waterways is to receive charity status.
British Waterways has been calling for the move for 18 months, and the Government has announced it intends to transfer inland waterways in England and Wales into a new charitable body.
It will be the biggest shake up of the waterways since nationalisation in 1948.
British Waterways believes it will attract new investment, secure jobs and give the public a greater role in the running of their canal, which North West Leicestershire’s MP described as “fantastic” for the restoration of Ashby canal currently underway.
Andrew said: “Not only is this news great for British Waterways on a national scale, but it is also going to be extremely beneficial to the people of North West Leicestershire who are working on the Ashby canal restoration.
“I believe giving the public a greater role in running the canals of Britain is most definitely the best way forward.”
Tony Hales, chairman of British Waterways, said: “The waterways have been utterly transformed for the better since British Waterways was established in 1962 and are now used in ways in which their original builders could never have imagined.
“That transformation has owed much to the enthusiastic staff and stakeholders who love the waterways passionately. Moving the waterways from public ownership into a charitable body recognises the need to build on that enthusiasm and marks the beginning of an exciting new chapter in their 250-year history.”