Shropshire Star

WI enjoy a talk about the history and restoration of canal

After a very enjoyable outing to the Black Country Museum on May 2, Pant WI were back at the institute on June 6. The speaker for the evening was Chris Bushnell – a trustee of the Montgomery Waterway Restoration Trust, a Friend of the Montgomery Canal, and a very committed volunteer involved in restoring the canal as well as maintaining those sections that are navigable.

The Montgomery Canal

Chris’s talk was entitled ‘The Fall and Rise of the Montgomery Canal’. Members learned about the history of the canal and how its use declined with the arrival of the railway. Having been closed in 1944, its restoration started in 1969. Seeing the photos of how overgrown certain sections had become since its closure, and with locks removed and roads built over it, members could appreciate the amazing progress that has been made by the many volunteer groups since the start of the project. With obvious interest in the section running through Pant, Chris updated members on the recent restoration of the Crickheath Basin and reinstatement of Schoolhouse Bridge. Those developments mean that work is now gathering pace on the next phase: to restore the 3km ‘dry’ section from Crickheath to Llanymynech.

The competition was ‘Past or present canal photo’, Pam Craig came first, Eiry Roberts was second and Janet Jones was third.

Pant WI usually meet on the first Thursday of every month at 7.15pm at Pant Memorial Institute. However, as the Institute will be in use as a polling station on July 4, they will meet next month at Llanymynech Church Hall where Amanda Roberts will be giving a talk about wellbeing and mindfulness.

New members or anyone who is interested in coming along and finding out more, please get in touch at

By Sarah Freshwater - Contributor

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