Waterway Legacy Leadership Programme

Canal restoration

*Due to the outbreak of COVID 19, the start date has been delayed and application deadline as been extended for the Waterway Legacy Leadership Programme. Please see below for the latest details.*

Our Waterway Legacy Leadership Programme is aimed at volunteers who wish to take the lead in canal restoration, but may not yet have the confidence to do so. We are investing in 15 volunteers who will receive over £1,000 worth of training and development across 2020 and 2021. The aim is to meet the needs of the restoration sector to ensure robust and volunteer led canal and waterways restoration projects continue to thrive and deliver the benefits of restored waterways to communities across the country.

Programme Outline

The programme will recruit up to 15 participants and provide training and mentoring to the selected candidates.  The programme will offer accepted candidates opportunities to attend internal and external training to develop identified skills required to lead canal restoration projects and those being sought across both engineering and construction.

Planned Training

The training programme is still a work in progress, however candidates can expect external and internal training to cover various aspects of working on a construction site including: Site Supervision Safety Training Scheme, heritage bricklaying, machine and tool training, leadership training and more. If you have identified other training opportunities that would benefit yourself and canal restoration let us know and we may be able to incorporate it into the programme.

Learning Modules

A number of home based modules will be created to develop the participant’s knowledge of WRG processes, most notably that of CDM regulations. The modules will put into practice skills being developed at varying parts of the programme. Modules may include topics such as:

  • Risk Assessments & Project Plans
  • Writing and demonstrating toolbox talks
  • Setting up a construction site
  • Environmental considerations


Each participant will be provided with an experienced restoration mentor with a background in leading projects, engineering or construction to provide support and advice throughout the programme.

Who can apply?

Anyone aged over 18 can apply for this opportunity, half of the selected candidates must be below the age of 40. 

How do I apply?

Download and return the 2020 application form (.doc). Preference will be given to those who demonstrate eagerness to get involved with future canal restoration work.

If you would like to discuss the opportunity, you can contact Alex Melson via email at alex.melson@waterways.org.uk or call 01494 783453 ext.607.

When does to programme start?

The programme will run from August 2020 to August 2021. A full outline for training will available in the new year.

Why should I put my name forward?

Besides, being part of a unique heritage and cultural experience, selected volunteers will benefit from the following:

  • Meet new people and make new friendships
  • Develop knowledge and gain new skills
  • Make your CV stand out and gain valuable work experience
  • Develop new language skills
  • Learn teamwork through volunteering
  • Have fun!

How much will this cost me?

Absolutely nothing, all training costs will be covered by WRG. Candidates will also be provided £200 worth of expenses to attend the training. 

Social Mobility Grant

Individuals from lower income backgrounds can apply for a Social Mobility Grant to secure further travel expenses and support interactions with their mentor. Each application to the Social Mobility Grant will be independently reviewed.

 Application Deadline: Friday 12th June 2020

Apply Now

For more information on how to get involved, please contact Alex Melson at alex.melson@waterways.org.uk or call 01494 783 453 ext 607


If you think you are a prime candidate for the Waterway Legacy Leadership Programme, please fill out our Application Form and send to alex.melson@waterways.org.uk

Application Deadline: Friday 12th June 2020

Apply Now