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Last Updated: Friday, 25 November 2005, 14:39 GMT
Tourism hope for 12m canal plan
Montgomery Canal at Welshpool
The Montgomery Canal fell into disrepair 60 years ago
A 12m plan to restore a town's canal will create new jobs and boost tourism, claims a new study for Powys council.

Tourists will spend an extra 550,000 per year in Newtown and 16 jobs will be created if the rebuilding work goes ahead, says the report.

The proposal is part of wider plans to connect the 35-mile Montgomery Canal to the waterways network in England.

The feasibility study about the Newtown scheme was discussed by councillors in Powys on Friday.

The cross-border canal runs south from the Llangollen Canal at Frankton Junction through Shropshire and Powys to Newtown.

The particular stretch for the Newtown restoration phase runs three miles past the hamlet Llanllwchaiarn and into the town itself.

Councils including Powys are being asked to help fund the 41m Montgomery Canal project, which has already secured some lottery funding.

The canal was built in 1821 and was used to carry limestone, wood and leather goods before being abandoned in 1944.

Volunteers have been restoring the waterway for more than 30 years. The canal has already been restored between nearby Welshpool and Berriew.

A report to councillors said the link to Newtown would be a "considerable boost to the town's image and long-term economic prosperity of the upper Severn Valley".

The feasibility study admitted that the 12m cost of the three-mile Newtown link was high, but engineering solutions were "very complex".


It added that Newtown's golf club could be redeveloped and used to provide a mooring basin for canal boats.

Plans even include an aqueduct over the River Severn in the town.

The Powys Council report said the feasibility study was "comprehensive and thorough", although canal restoration work was dependent on funding, it added.

Councillors endorsed the feasibility study at the meeting and the item will go before the board members next month.

Canal restoration plans approved
11 Apr 04 |  Mid Wales
Canal link-up wins Euro cash
17 Mar 04 |  Mid Wales
Canal link a step nearer
05 Apr 03 |  Wales


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