Chester & Merseyside Work Parties

Vacancy for a Volunteer Work Party Co-ordinator

IWA Chester & Merseyside Branch is looking for an enthusiastic Volunteer Work Party Co-ordinator to organise its once monthly work parties in Chester & surrounding areas and liaise with Canal & River Trust. 

Chester & Merseyside Branch social meetings are held from October to May, on the second Tuesday in the month, in the Tom Rolt room at the National Waterways Museum, Ellesmere Port, starting at 7.45 pm.  See the Social Events page for details.

For more information please contact Jim Forkin by emailing

During 2017 IWA Chester and Merseyside workparties took place on a regular basis at Tower Wharf in Chester but also Eldonian Village in Liverpool, preparing for our Festival last June.  We work in partnership with the Canal & River Trust and Chester Canal Heritage Trust. 

For further information about the next work party please contact

Also there are lots of volunteering opportunities in Liverpool.  Contact  if you are interested in getting involved with these work parties.

As usual, for our work parties all equipment, life jackets, gloves, litter pickers, rakes etc. will be provided.  However please ensure you have stout footwear and dress for the weather.

Work Party reports : 

July on the Dee Branch.

julyworkpartyA sunny day with much appreciated cups of tea provided by local residents. We removed weeds and cleaned up paving around Dee lock and Old Port basin finishing off with rescuing a family of ducks that had become trapped in the lock chamber. The plan to work on clearing up the Dee Branch and River lock prior to Environment Agency flood relief works which will include installation of our new Tidal Gauge. This is part of the legacy from our Campaign Festival in Chester, in June 2014 which we hope will lead towards safer navigation of the Dee, either over the Weir or via a lock, to the upper reaches beyond Chester.

June - Litterbugs beware.


We collected 15 bags of litter between Deva Aqueduct and Cow Lane, including North Basin and Dee Branch.

May - Lock Painting

 Hoole Lane and Chemistry Locks. We made lots of new frienmayworkpartyds and recruited many new volunteers.

Teaming up with the CRT and volunteers from the local Labour constituency party. We had more than 30 volunteers split between two locks on the Chester flight. Managing a complete paint job of both Hoole Lane and Chemistry Locks.

April - A day out in Liverpool

aprilworkpartyWe cleared lots of litter from in and around the Leeds & Liverpool canal between Eldonian Village hall and Stanley Locks.  In addition we weeded and tidied up the towpath and managed to recover a large wheelie skip from the canal behind Robert Lynch House.


We saw February out at Chester with a good turnout. 11 volunteers put in a total of 64 hours.

We finally completed the task at Chester, started in December, clearing overhanging vegetation and being careful to ensure that we left some areas for wildlife habitat, rediscovered the long lost  offside bank coping stones at Union Terrace (Chester Cow Lane bridge).

(For info, there were some early nesting Mallards on site that had already claimed their patches, these areas were cordoned off so our works didn't disturb them)


The work party went well, despite the very cold weather.  We managed to clear the offside saplings along Union Terrace at Chester.  We had 7 volunteers attending from 10:00 - 15:00 and we now have a boat load of wood prunings and clippings at Tower Wharf.

This task is the start of a series of offside vegetation cutting and tidy up sessions in the
Chester area.

 Our cold volunteers with their sapling load