CaRT closes Peak Forest and Macclesfield canals

Published: Friday, 02 August 2019

THE Canal & River Trust has decided to close both the Peak Forest and Macclesfield canals.

This is of course because of the real possibility of further damage of the dam at Toddbook Resevoir at Whaley Bridge, that could flood the canals, issuing the following notice:

Following the heavy rainfall which has caused widespread problems across the North West, we’re currently working with local agencies to manage the potential risks arising from damage to the spillway at Toddbrook Reservoir which feeds the Peak Forest Canal. Our engineers are on site assessing the scale of the damage and over the next few hours we will be doing all we can to draw down water from the reservoir in a controlled way to reduce the risk to surrounding communities

In the meantime we have taken the decision to close the Marple Flight on the Peak Forest canal and the Bosley Flight on the Macclesfield Canal whilst we manage the potential risks. The emergency services are taking every precaution including evacuating local properties and closing local roads to maintain public safety. If you are boating in this area please take every precaution.

Stop boaters getting away

To this, our Keith Gudgin replies: They say 'If you are boating in this area please take every precaution', and then immediately stop boaters getting out and away from the summit pound by closing the only locks that allow them to take this very sensible precaution!

If the water is stopped from keeping the Peak Forest and Macclefield full then all that will happen is boats will ground and be unable to move! Can't understand the thinking behind this stupid decision!  Boats going down both flights will help by using some of the water that they want to get out of the reservoir.

Last inspected

I'd be interested to know when CaRT last inspected the concrete splashway on the dam to see if it was still sound and waterproof to stop water ingress that would wash away the subsoil underneath. If their waterproofing of locks and splash walls is anything to go by then I would expect that it was not looked at at all or at least left until it failed as per normal. I hope the powers that be implement a full inquiry into their maintenance regime to find out.