What do I need to host a canal camp?

1)     Accommodation:

Your group will be responsible for booking it, for liaising with the owners beforehand, and for paying the hire fees!  Visit our accommodation page for more information.

2)     Plant and Equipment:

You are responsible for providing major items of plant and equipment as the hosts. You will also be expected to supply other items such as Acrow props and scaffolding, which may well have to be left in place after the end of the camp. WRG can train volunteers to use this plant with our Drivers Authorisation scheme

3)     Site Welfare Facilities

The site must have a toilet and hand washing facilities: a hired unit is satisfactory.

4)     Permission to carry out the work

Permissions can be complex and time consuming to obtain, but it is essential that they are in place, or have been formally discussed, before WRG has finalised the Canal Camps schedule in the Autumn preceding the camp.
Have you contacted the following bodies, where applicable?

5)     Engineering advice.

WRG has a reputation for excellent work, earned over 40 years, and which is still growing. We try to work to ever higher standards, and we are increasingly reluctant to do poor quality repair jobs with a limited life span. The Sites Group will advise on methods of work whenever engineering work is involved, and where any doubt remains, we have access to very highly qualified engineers who will give their advice on an honorary basis.

6)     Materials.

Your group will provide all materials required to carry out the work. Wherever possible, these should be agreed in advance, and obtained before the Camp begins. To allow for unforeseen circumstances, we usually like to have accounts opened, and usable by our Camp Leader and Assistant, with:

  • a local builders merchant;
  • a garage;
  • a hire shop or plant hire firm.

7)     Money

A Camp can consume a staggering amount of materials, fuel, and hired equipment. You will also have to pay for fuel used by plant and vehicles, fuel used in delivering vans and equipment on loan from WRG, and for the accommodation. The total can mount alarmingly, and you should be quite sure that the group’s funds can withstand the strain. WRG will help you to estimate the costs of the Camp if you are unsure.

8)     Support from your members

While a Camp can function in isolation, it is encouraging to see interest from the local group, and to have some of them working on site with us. However, for reasons of safety and good order, it should be remembered it is a WRG site for the duration of the Camp, and your members must be prepared to work to the direction of our leader.

9)     Publicity

Your Publicity Offficer may wish to take the opportunity to arrange some high-profile coverage of the project.

10)  Entertainment

The most successful camps often have a busy social calendar arranged for some of the evenings. Examples include boat trips, slide talks about the local waterways, barbecues, quizzes, treasure hunts, cinema visits, ten-pin bowling, swimming, and trips to local attractions. These can also be a good occasion for your members to meet and get to know the visitors, and will help our volunteers see where their efforts fit into the whole restoration project.

11)  “The Contract”

When we agree a Canal Camp, we send you “The Contract”. Though not a contract in the legal sense, it is intended to be a clear statement of our commitment, your commitment, the agreed work, and any other matters which we have discussed and agreed on. It must be agreed by your committee, and it cannot subsequently be changed without full discussion with us. If this agreement is seriously breached, for example by changing the work without notice or by failing to provide the necessary plant and materials, we will reserve the right to move the entire camp to another canal without prior notice either before or during the camp.

For more information on Canal Camps:
Where do I start?
Canal Camp Accommodation

You can find all this and more  in our ‘So you want to host a canal camp’ document, which highlights what is involved in hosting a Canal Camp -Hosting a Canal Camp Document

Alternatively if you are interested in WRG supporting your Waterways Festival please read WRG at Small Festivals Document (Trailboat & Campaign Rallies).

Host a Canal Camp -WRG Working Holiday

Useful Information

Host a Canal Camp Document

Remember if you have any questions please contact Head Office.

WRG's Regional Groups

In addition to Canal Camps, we also have several regional groups who may be interested in holding weekend working parties to help your project.  Such requests can be submitted throughout the year, either direct to the groups concerned or via Head Office. Most of the regional groups plan their work schedule some way in advance, so it is best to ask early.