Deep mining in the area has ceased and subsidence largely finished, so now restoring this predominately rural canal has begun.
A terminus at Measham will provide the canal with a definite goal. Restoring the currently isolated Moira Furnace length has resulted in the Ashby Canal becoming the focus of a major leisure area, providing a mix of industrial heritage, rural recreation and nature conservation as well as a gateway to the National Forest.
An imaginative proposal is to route the canal past the old Measham Station, which is similar to the one at Shackerstone, on the Battlefield Line. This pleasing building, with no likelihood of being reconnected with the railway network, will receive a new lease of life as a stopping point for canal boats and provide a permanent home for the Measham Museum with its local history displays and Measham Teapot collection. Since 1846, the future of the Ashby Canal has been linked with the Ashby and Nuneaton Joint Railway and it looks likely that this link will continue for many years to come.
Leicestershire County Council is leading the project to restore the Ashby Canal, and has successfully applied for a Transport and Works Act order giving Government Authority to restore the canal from Snarestone to Measham.
Preliminary works are now completed at Snarestone. Just waiting for the funding for the next length!
Further information on the restoration project is available from Geoff Pursglove, Ashby Canal Project Officer –Tel 01530 273956. firstname.lastname@example.org