Attempts to re-establish a canal link between the Severn and the Thames have suffered a financial set back.
The Heritage Lottery Fund has deferred a decision on a bid for a multi-million pound grant for the project.
British Waterways submitted the £40m bid in June 2003, on behalf of the Cotswold Canals Partnership, which hoped to open the canals by 2014.
The Heritage Lottery Fund has now decided to defer the bid until its meeting later in the year.
If the money had been forthcoming the canals partnership would have secured half the amount needed to complete the programme.
It wants to restore both the Stroudwater and Thames and Severn Canals, linking Saul Junction with Lechlade.