Selling off land puts stop to canal restoration

Published: Friday, 26 April 2024

THERE are doubts as to further restoration of the Monmouthshire & Brecon Canal.

As Torfaen Borough Council sold off part of the Mon & Brec original land some 30 years ago.

With this now coming to light as plans for the restoration of the waterway are being considered.

In private ownership

The problem being that the land that is now in private ownership contains the remains of one of the five locks that require restoration to continue the navigation.

The lock cottage and the land in question were sold-off with the council issuing  its then new owner a certificate confirming its legal use.

This all came to light recently after its planning department attempted to bring enforcement action against the owner for putting up a fence.

Council had sold the land

But the action was thrown-out when records were produced showing the council had sold the land in 1994 and had previously recognised it as part of his garden.

As a result Llantarnam Council members debated the problem that acknowledged that restoring the canal would require the restoration of the privately owned section of canal which has been culverted under the lock keeper's cottage.

Eventually, one council member stated that he 'can’t see there being a change with the land that isn’t in our ownership, it will remain not in our ownership as we move closer to technological solutions, we can bring them to members to look at for solutions to any specific blockages on the canal'.