Issue date: 15th June 2016

Thousands turned out to enjoy the Eldonian Village Canal Festival in Liverpool, IWA’s National Campaign Festival for 2016, which took place over the weekend of 11th & 12th June.  The event celebrated the bi-centenary of the Leeds & Liverpool Canal and promoted IWA’s campaign aims of increasing boat numbers visiting Liverpool, engaging with the local community and encouraging investment into the area around Eldonian Village.

Over 80 boats attended the Festival, which was organised by IWA Chester & Merseyside Branch and supported by the Eldonian Housing Association, Liverpool Culture and Canal & River Trust.  In the lead up to the event IWA volunteers worked with local schools to improve understanding of  the history of canals in the local community and, (jointly with Canal & River Trust), funded angling taster sessions for local children with the Prince Albert Angling Society.

The Festival was opened by Deputy Mayor of Liverpool, Anne O’Byrne, and a large crowd heard opening speeches by Tony McGann OBE (Chairman of the Eldonian Housing Association), Les Etheridge (IWA National Chairman) and Richard Parry (CRT Chief Executive).  Local Liverpool Councillor, Joe Hanson, later said: “Well done to everyone for the massive success that the canal festival turned out to be.  The IWA teams delivered everything they had promised and then some, so a massive thank you to them.”

Activities and entertainment for visitors over the weekend included free boat trips, live music and performances of contemporary dance and Old Time Music Hall routines, many catering stands and interesting stalls as well as Shreck, the boat horse.  Children were entertained with face painting, free canoes rides and IWA’s own Wild over Waterways (WOW) activities.  Two “Get Afloat” raffle prizes were kindly provided by ABC Boat Hire and Midway Boats.  Both of these were won by local residents who were absolutely thrilled with their good fortune.



Photo - Eldonian Festival - trip boat and moored boats at the Festival. Photo by Mike Carter

Other photos available on request.

Press Contact

For more information please contact Alison Smedley, Press Office, The Inland Waterways Association, by emailing or phoning 07779 090915.

Notes for Editors

IWA is The Inland Waterways Association, a membership charity that works to protect and restore the country's 6,500 miles of canals and rivers.  IWA is a national organisation with a network of volunteers and branches who deploy their expertise and knowledge to work constructively with navigation authorities, government and other organisations.  The Association also provides practical and technical support to restoration projects through its expert Waterway Recovery Group.
IWA - Keeping our waterways alive.

IWA's Campaign Festival Puts Eldonian Village on the Canal Map

Photo - Eldonian Festival - trip boat and moored boats at the Festival. Photo by Mike Carter

Other photos available on request.