Resurfacing The Grand Union Canal towpath  



Project Spec

Services Used



Scope of work

As a result of our consistently high-quality work, we have been employed, for many years, to keep the towpaths, running along the side of The Grand Union Canal in good repair.

The Canal links 2 of England’s biggest cities, from Little Venice in Paddington London into the heart of Birmingham

Years ago, it was used as the major transport link before rail and road travel were available.  Nowadays the only boats on the water are pleasure crafts including barges which we utilise in our work sometimes.

It is 145 miles long and would take a walker between 9 – 14 days to walk the complete length.

Leisure, long-distance walkers, and cyclists use the towpath. The result of thousands of feet and wheels that tread and spin along the picturesque towpath means that repairs are needed now and again at various sections along the canal. This is where we come in.

What we did

One of our jobs was to resurface an area at Catherine de Barns, Solihull. The materials are delivered to a compound.  These are then loaded onto a barge and taken along the canal to where they are needed. We are fortunate that one of our long-term employees has a Helmsman Certificate so can drive the barges.  An excavator is used to move the Dense Binder Macadam Basecourse and chippings from the boat into dumpers or gritting barrows.  Dense Binder Macadam Base Course is laid. Followed by Binder, then the vehicle holding the chippings follows behind releasing the chippings along the path. The path is then rolled.

We get a good feeling from being able to be part of the team that keeps the miles and miles of towpath in good repair so that people can enjoy pleasurable and safe leisure time out in the beautiful countryside.

Client says

We have used DW Surfacing Eastern Ltd for many years for the canal work. Always efficient, professional and get the job done to a high standard that is expected from The Canal & River Trust

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