What can YOU do?

Volunteers can do many things to help preserve or restore a waterways bridge. To ensure the restoration or repair work is a safe and enjoyable experience for all involved it is essential that the work is adequately planned, organised and supervised.

Repainting: Many canal bridges were painted white as a warning to boats for decorative purposes or as an attempt to protect the brickwork and now form a significant element in the heritage value of the structure. Over the years paintwork can become defective and start to flake, blister, peel or crack exposing the brickwork underneath. Volunteers can easily get involved in the repainting of these bridges. More details ...

Repointing Repointing is the process of taking out and replacing mortar from the face of a joint. Mortar, being softer than the building materials around it, often erodes over time due to the effects of the weather. If the mortar ‘fails’ or falls away there is nothing to protect the bridge from the elements and water is able to penetrate the bridge and erode its structure. By repointing the bridge you will help slow the deterioration of the structure. This activity should be carried out under the supervision of an individual who has experience using Lime Mortar. More details ...

Brickwork repairs Britain’s canals relied heavily on brick as their principal building material. A lot of the softer bricks were prone to frost damage due to the damp nature of the canal environment and as a consequence many bridges are in desperate need of repair with large cracks, crumbling bricks and whole sections missing. Some bridges have also been exposed to  excessive movement, invasive vegetation growth, and water penetration from poor pointing – all of which can cause brickwork to fail or crack. More details ...

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