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Calderdale Canals

Calder Hebble Navigation Towpath Improvements

This scheme will deliver improvements to a stretch of the Calder Hebble Navigation, approximately 2km between Bridge 1 at Sowerby Bridge Basin and Hollas Lane Bridge.

The work will start on Monday 26 March 2018 with an estimated 16-week construction period. Further details, including a programme of works with details of closures and diversions, will be available shortly.

The improvements are an element of the Canals project, a programme of works across West Yorkshire being delivered as part of the second phase of CityConnect, in partnership with Canal and River Trust and Calderdale Council.

Upgrades to the towpath will provide local communities with a convenient option to travel away from the roads for utility, employment or leisure. CityConnect is committed to improving cycling routes around West Yorkshire and is working towards the vision of West Yorkshire being recognised as a great region for cycling.

Map of proposed improvements


Salter Hebble

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The improvements will include:

Resurfacing – using a sealed surface to improve water erosion and create a path which will allow people to use it all year round.

Widening the towpath – where possible the width of the towpath will be increased to allow people to pass comfortably.

Coping Stones – where these have become overgrown and uneven they will cleared or removed, cleaned and rebedded.

Improved Signage – will be created for the canal. It aims to promote positive user behaviours and warn of areas where extra care is needed.


Public consultation for the scheme took place between Monday 27 March and Sunday 16 April. Comments were collected via email, online and at two public consultation events;

Thursday 6 April in Sowerby Bridge at Happy Days Cycles, Town Hall Street from 4pm until 7pm
Tuesday 11 April in Sowerby Bridge Wharf at Cobblestones Bar and Grill from 11:30am until 2:30pm

The feedback from the consultation events was positive with the large majority of people in favour of making improvements to the towpath, The full results have been compiled into a report and will be considered by all parties before the the project commences.


Rochdale Canal Towpath Improvements

This scheme involves upgrades to an important section of Rochdale Canal, some of which is currently in a very poor state of repair.

The work will start on Monday 26 March 2018 with an estimated 16-week construction period. Further details, including a programme of works with details of closures and diversions, will be available shortly.

The scheme will enable the towpath to be used safely and comfortably by cyclists and pedestrians all year round. The upgraded towpath will provide the communities along this route with a convenient option to travel between them away from the roads for leisure, utility or employment. It will also improve the connectivity to a number of off-highway cycle routes in the local area.

Improvements delivered as part of this scheme will include re-surfacing, re-pointing of some cobbled areas, clearing excessive vegetation, signage and drainage improvements. The works on this will interface with the flood remediation works in Calderdale being undertaken by Canal and River Trust and Calderdale MBC, which are being funded through separate grant funding from DfT.

The material used to resurface improve the towpath has been chosen according to the Canal and River Trust Design Standards 2013, it will be a self-binding aggregate which is well suited to a semi-rural environment such as this. Where required along the stretch, sections of the canal wash wall will be rebuilt using salvaged stone from the canal. Where possible the towpath will be widened to improve accessibility for all users, in some areas the width may be limited by physical or environmental barriers.  Canal and River Trust will review their signage strategy to support all users of the canal

The scheme was split into two phases;

Phase 1 from Sowerby Bridge to Stubbings Bridge





Phase 2 from Stubbings Bridge to Todmorden. –  Phase 2 is currently on a reserve list of projects to deliver. During Autumn 2018 West Yorkshire Combined Authority’s CityConnect programme underwent a review. This independent review took into account the affordability of all of the projects as well as the quality of the schemes to be delivered and was supported by the CityConnect Advisory Group. Following the approval of West Yorkshire Combined Authority’s Transport Committee on 17th November, phase 2 of the Rochdale Canal improvements was put on a project reserve list. It will not be delivered through the CityConnect programme at this time however further funding opportunities are actively being explored and it remains the ambition of the WYCA and Calderdale Council to deliver this scheme




Public consultation ran from 28th November to 11th December. People were able to comment on the plans online, via email or post, or attending one of the three public consultation events;

• Wednesday 30 November, Trades Club, Holme Street, Hebden Bridge from 4.30pm to 7.30pm
• Thursday 1 December, Happy Days Café, Town Hall Street, Sowerby Bridge from 4.30pm to 7.30pm
• Friday 2 December, Town Hall, Bridge Street, Todmorden from 4.30pm to 7.30pm – CANCELLED rescheduled for Thursday 8th December.

Please check our facebook  and twitter accounts for updates on activities and information around these projects.


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