Registered Charity No. 702429

NEWS 2008

It was an incredible night for UK talent at the 36th International Emmy awards gala as Britain claimed an amazing seven out of the ten trophys up for grabs. And no one was more thrilled than our Vice-President David Suchet, who picked up the Best Performance for an Actor trophy for his role as media tycoon Robert Maxwell in the BBC 2007 series Maxwell, about the scandal-plagued final stages of the British media mogul's life.

Speaking backstage at the ceremony at the New York Hilton Hotel on Monday, November 24th 2008, David said: "It's been an unbelievable night for the Brits. I'm absolutely thrilled to bits, I can't believe it's really true.

The winners were chosen from among 40 nominees from 16 countries competing for International Emmys, honouring excellence in TV programming produced outside the United States, in ten categories.


On Saturday, 8th November the Trust held a very successful social evening in Whittington Village Hall. It was attended by over 100 members and friends, raising over £1000 for Trust coffers. The main feature was a performance by the Day Star Theatre Company. Michael Fabricant MP, Patron of the Trust, was guest of honour and drew the winners of the Annual Grand Prize Draw. The Draw raised over £4000 for the Trust.


We congratulate all the lucky winners in the Grand Prize Draw for 2008 whose tickets were drawn by Michael Fabricant MP during our Social Evening at Whittington Village Hall on 8th November.

We give special thanks to the donors of the prizes shown below, and to Trish Humphries for all her hard work organising it.

The lucky winners were:-

1. £500 CASH Mr G Tuckley, Burntwood
2. Dinner, Bed & Breakfast at the RAMADA HOTEL
Donated by the North Birmingham Ramada Hotel
Mr M Jones, Lostwithiel
3. £100 B&Q Voucher
Donated by B&Q
Mrs P Lea, Llandsul
4. Hire of DAY BOAT
Donated by ANGLO WELSH at Great Haywood
Mrs L Crawford, Cannock Wood
5. £50 VOUCHER
Donated by Robert Carr Jewellers
Mr S Jenkins, Alton
6. £50 VOUCHER
Donated by WAITROSE
Mr P Kitchin, York
7. TWIST STEPPER Exercise Machine
Donated by Lilian Crawford
Mrs E Pettit, Ottery St Mary
8. Selection of AVON Products
Donated by Kathryn Humphries
Mr A Greenwood, Sevenoaks
Donated by Halfords
Mrs M Redwood, Sutton Coldfield
Donated by Steve Cooper of Redshaw’s Books and S&J Music
Mrs M Healy, Pelsall
11. £15 VOUCHER
Donated by the Midlands Cooperative Society
Mrs A M Scott, Rotherham

We wish to thank everyone who bought, and sold tickets to raise so much again this year. The Prize Draw for 2009 will be launched in February and tickets will be offered to members with the Spring 2009 edition of “Cut Both Ways”.


The Trust has signed a contract with consultants, W.S. Atkins, to produce a feasibility Study for the Lichfield Canal. This is a major step forward as, for the first time, the Trust will have a fully researched document which will show just how the canal can be restored from Ogley Junction, Brownhills to Huddlesford Junction. It will cover all the relevant aspects including engineering and environmental and economic benefits. It will be completed by April 2009 so that it can be presented to Lichfield District Council as part of their Local Development Framework consultation. The study will incorporate the considerable archive of information which the Trust has built up over the last 20 years. W.S. Atkins has wide experience in canal restoration and will bring a strong and experienced team to the work.


Keith Grice had been recommended to receive an award for his many years of service to the Brownhills community, including helping to run the Youth Club and of course the restoration of local canals. On 6th October 2008 Keith, accompanied by his daughter and granddaughter attended an evening at Brownhills Community Technology College where the award was presented by super model (and ex-pupil) Erin O’Connor. Keith is a long-standing and keen supporter of the Lichfield and Hatherton Canals Restoration Trust and will be found driving a JCB most weekends.



The 18th AGM held on Friday, 25th April 2008 at Whittington Village Hall was attended by nearly 50 members and supporters who heard heart-warming reports of achievements made during 2007. Chairman Brian Kingshott stressed how much the efforts of Directors and volunteers had contributed in the year, but sounded a note of caution in that more and younger people were needed to take part in moving the Trust forward into the future. Success brings added burdens which must be spread across a wider operating base. Presentation of the annual accounts audited by Dains - supplemented by those for the Retail Trading Company examined by West - confirmed draft figures published in the last issue of “Cut Both Ways”, certified as upholding the Trust’s accounting records and financial statements. Directors retiring by rotation were duly re-elected as also were Dains as main auditors.

Following the formal business, Cllr Terry Thomas, Sheriff of Lichfield announced that the Trust will receive a donation of around £1,000 from among the charities he has chosen to support during his present year in office. Also, a cheque for £1,000 was presented by Tim Burgin on behalf of the Inland Waterways Association, Lichfield Branch, from their successful fund-raising activities last year to go towards the cost of a Feasibility Study needed for the Lichfield Canal. The Chairman expressed particular thanks for these generous donations which greatly assist the Trust in its work. The meeting ended with an encouraging talk by Ivor Caplan on the rewards being reaped by the Droitwich Canal Trust after some 35 years of determined efforts in moving soon towards completing the restoration of the two historic canals in the Droitwich area.

Click here for the Chairman's Report
Click here for the Directors' Report
Click here for Accounts for 2007

Laurence Hogg Productions re-launch a revised and fully updated edition of
"The Missing Links" DVD
Narrated and presented by David Suchet OBE, Vice-President of the Lichfield & Hatherton Canals Restoration Trust, The Missing Links describes the history, background and ongoing restoration of the Lichfield Canal and the Hatherton Canal.

Updated in February 2008 with a new introduction by Michael Fabricant, MP for Lichfield and Trust Patron, speaking about his support for this important restoration which will revitalise the underused parts of the northern BCN, and his dream of seeing the boats return to Lichfield.

The physical restoration work being carried out by volunteers is brought fully up to date.

Includes archive images of the Cannock Extension Canal and Hednesford Basin.

Available to buy from the Lichfield & Hatherton stand
at various events throughout the season, including the Crick Boat Show 24th - 26th May 2008

For more details and to purchase online visit our Sales Page


At 09.30 on Tuesday 11th December, Trust Patron Michael Fabricant opened a Parliamentary debate on the future funding of canals in the UK and the activities of the Lichfield & Hatherton Canals Restoration Trust. The debate was answered by Jonathan Shaw MP, the Waterways Minister at the Department of the Environment, Food, and Rural Affairs. Many other MPs participated.

The full transcript of the Canals Debate is available here.

In response to this debate, the folowing letter was published in the "Birmingham Post" on 13 Dec 2007.

Dear Editor,

Michael Fabricant deserves thanks and recognition for speaking up in the debate on Staffordshire's canals, and in particular for the restoration of the Lichfield and Hatherton canals ("Post", 12 December). He is a years-long supporter of the project that would transform Walsall and Brownhills from canal backwaters to focal points on the national waterway network, and re-link the Lichfield and Cannock areas with Birmingham's canal network.

For too long, the Lichfield and Hatherton Canals Restoration Trust (LCHRT) has pushed the project forward with little or no support from the local authorities which stand to reap the sizeable economic and regeneration benefits of these restorations.

The Trust's most notable achievement was to persuade MEL, the hard-nosed builders of the M6 Toll, to allow for canal crossings at Churchbridge (a navigable culvert) and North of Brownhills (an aqueduct), which were fully charitably funded by the Trust.

This was a truly defining moment, for, without these canal crossings, the restoration project would have died there and then.

And that is exactly what would have happened, had it been left to Walsall and their neighbour local authorities in Staffordshire. So a huge debt of gratitude is owed to the volunteers of the LCHRT.

I happen to think that the time has now come where the Trust should no longer have to soldier on alone. If the representatives of the communities in the areas of the West Midlands and Staffordshire that stand to benefit most are truly serious about these restorations, a partnership should now be established involving the Trust, the British Waterways Board, Walsall Council, Staffordshire County Council, Cannock Chase, Lichfield and South Staffordshire District Councils, and the Inland Waterways Association.

Only by working together will we have the strength to win and assemble the funding necessary to bring this laudable strategic project to a successful conclusion.

Richard Worrall, Walsall.

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