NEWS 2013

Tree Planting at Darnford Park

21st December - Mike Battison, our environmental guru plants an oak tree at Darnford Park. Mike Brown and Pete Magee assisted with the digging while 15 other Trust members gave support.

�The greatest achievement was at first and for a time a dream. The oak sleeps in the acorn, the bird waits in the egg, and in the highest vision of the soul a waking angel stirs. Dreams are the seedlings of realities.� ~ James Allen

City Centre Display now open

December 15th - Our new temporary display in the Lichfield City Arcade is now open. It is attracting considerable interest and several new members have been signed up already. DIsplay boards tell the story of the of work done by the Trust in it's first 25 years and explain future objectives. A video showing the past three Huddlesford Gatherings is also on display. If you can help to staff the unit please contact Mervyn Ainge or any Trust officer.

new shop in city arcade

City Centre Shop for the Canal Trust

The Lichfield Canal Trust has been granted a licence to temporarily occupy an empty shop in the City Centre Arcade in Lichfield. We plan to use the premises for displays to increase local awareness of the trust activities by explaining the work of the trust and its position in the community, as well as recruiting new members and encouraging donations.

We have the keys and the challenge now is to create an eye catching, interesting, and informative presentation. We will be open from Saturday 15th until a new tenant is found.

We hope to open on market days - Tuesdays, Fridays and Saturdays - and perhaps Sundays. It will require considerable commitment to staff the shop. Although the Trust has over 1800 members we desperately need more help on the ground. If you can help in anyway please contact  Mervyn Ainge or any Trust officer.

Autumn Social

Our Autumn Social was held on the 26th October in Whittington Village Hall. Musical entertainment was by the 5-piece band from Cannock "Second Thoughts" who went down a storm with their varied selection of 60's classics. 
Around 100 people attended and were served a fish & chip supper complete with bread and butter and salt n' vinegar, followed by gateau or fruit salad.
This year's Grand Prize Draw with a first prize of �500 was drawn, full list of winners below.
Several donated items including two pictures were auctioned which took the funds raised by the evening to about �700. Another successful and most enjoyable event!


Grand Prize Draw

The response to our Grand Prize Draw has been exceptional, with 6,150 tickets sold. As before, the Draw was made by members of the audience at our Social Evening at Whittington Village Hall on Saturday, 26 th October 2013 .

The lucky winners are:-

    1. 11628           �500 cheque,                                                                                 Mr Robert Stammers, Lichfield .

    2. 07640           �150 cheque �off your holiday�,                                                     Miss L Alexander, Harborne, Birmingham .

    3. 00642           �50 Marks & Spencer voucher sponsored by a Trust member,   Mrs K Dean, Chase Terrace,Staffordshire.

    4. 03932           �The Lichfield Collection� silver photo frame by Arthur Price,      Mr T Habart, Lichfield .

    5. 09157           Selection from DVD catalogue by Laurence Hogg Productions,  Mr E H Foakes, Bury St. Edmunds.

    6. 12263           �The Greatest Steam Locomotives� DVD and book set,              Mr R J Larkin, Lichfield .

    7. 14612           Photomosaic 1,000-piece jig-saw puzzle of the �Titanic�,            Mr P Simms, Tamworth .

    8. 00298           Authenticated ornamental dish,                                                    Parkes family, Tamworth .

    9. 14022           �British Birds Handbook�,                                                             Dr R W Brooks, Walsall .

We thank all our members who supported this fund-raising activity and to our willing volunteers who made a special effort in this 25th Anniversary Year.

Hatherton Canal Dredging

October 2013 - Contractors Aquaclear Water Management working for the Canal & River Trust have been carrying out dredging operations on part of the Hatherton Canal between Catsbridge Lane Bridge and Cherry Tree Bridge (No. 8) behind the Roman Way Hotel. Two specialist machines are in use, one dredging and one reed cutting, for about 9 days.

Regular working parties maintain the towpaths. Contact Dennis Cooper on 01543-374370 (work) for details of meeting places.

More information on the Hatherton Canal including Google Maps here.


Towpath Trail Launched

Over the coming months sections of the Lichfield Canal Towpath will be opened to the public to form the Heritage Towpath Trail. A Brochure and Interactive Map will be issued showing how the Lichfield Canal wraps around the City, including links into the City and other paths, walks, cycle routes etc as well as heritage information.

The first 6km were launched by Help for Heroes champion Doug Hamilton Cox who is walking the canals of the UK collecting for the troops along the way, and also raising the profile of the work being done to restore our industrial heritage.

View more photos of the walk here

Huddlesford Heritage Gathering
Sept 21st and 22nd 2013

The Draco Crafts boat �Success� aptly describes the Huddlesford Heritage Gathering of 2013.
Held over the weekend of 21st - 22nd September, fine weather helped to ensure a well attended and most enjoyable event.

Organised jointly by the Lichfield and Hatherton Canals Restoration Trust and the Lichfield Cruising Club this was the first two-day event and marked the 25th anniversary of the trust.

The organisers wish to say a big thank you to all those who worked so hard to make the event such a success.   

View our picture gallery here...

Watch the first in a series of videos on YouTube - A Trip on Daysy

...and a 25 min. video showing some of the highlights here

Also see an article at with more photos on the page Huddlesford Boat Gathering Sept 2013
Thanks to Geoff Caine for this.

New webmaster

Sue Williams has retired after 12 years of building from scratch and running the LHCRT website. The new webmaster is Paul Marshall.
Paul said "Sue has done a brilliant job with the site but unlike Sue I am not a fount of all knowedge as far as trust affairs go so I will be very much dependant on other members to feed me with information to put on the site."

Please contact
with comments, suggestions, news and archive material of interest to members.

27th August - The LHCRT website is now using a new server which doubles the amount of space available at less than half the cost.
The Trust's web site is hosted by

High Sheriff of Staffordshire visits Lichfield Canal

Mrs Sarah Elsom, High Sheriff of Staffordshire has paid tribute to dedicated volunteers working on restoring the Lichfield Canal. At a ceremonial planting of a Swedish Birch tree in Darnford Park, Lichfield on Wednesday 3rd April, she praised those who have worked for many years to bring back this closed 200-year old waterway link across the Midlands. Cllr Ken Humphreys, also attended to give his support as Chairman of Lichfield District Council.

The High Sheriff of Staffordshire, Mrs Sarah Elsom with Cllr and Mrs Humphreys,
Eric Wood (President of the Trust) and Peter Buck (Engineering Director of the Trust)
with volunteers and members of the Trust

Meeting members of the Lichfield & Hatherton Canals Restoration Trust, the High Sheriff was pleased to see how much has been done by so few who volunteer their time and expertise from many walks of life to undertake such public spirited work. With her own background as a Museum Curator and as the Queen�s Representative for upholding law and order in Staffordshire, she recognised the value of restoring such a valuable public amenity in the County.

In dedicating the tree, Mrs Elsom said it provides a focal point for the public to recognise Trust workers, past and present, who have striven over many years, often against difficult circumstances, towards putting Lichfield back on the waterways map of Britain. She says that �The whole fabric of community life would crumble without the many people who give their time and resources tirelessly to help others. There are so many organisations and individuals across the County who make a real difference to the lives of others.�

Easter Coffee Morning CANCELLED

Because of the very wintry weather and the forecast of more snow and ice to come over the Easter weekend it has been decided to cancel the "Coffee Morning" at Whittington Wharf this year. This is always a very enjoyable and well supported event and we are disappointed to have to call it off.

We hope everyone will understand and we will try to re-schedule it when the weather improves.

(This is not Whittington Wharf, it's Bob's car on the drive in Hammerwich, but you get the idea!)

Saturday 4th May 2013

The concert at Lichfield Cathedral by the Morriston Orpheus Choir was an event which no-one who attended is likely to forget. One of the world�s great male voice choirs, they gave a magnificent performance of great variety, but for me they were at their very best when singing the stirring hymns, especially so in Welsh.
All this despite the tragic death, in the Cathedral and just before the start of the concert, of one of their members. Another member had died at home in Cardiff before they set out, so it must have been very tough for them to continue.

We hope to engage the choir again in the future, when, given more time to arrange publicity and sponsorship, we should have another successful evening, one not to be missed.

Terry Brown

We are very fortunate to have engaged this renowned choir to give a memorable performance in support of our Silver Jubilee Year.

Formed in 1935 and enjoying an international reputation as a leading exponent of male choral singing, the Morriston Orpheus Choir is in constant demand performing around 25-30 engagements annually. The Choir, often referred to as the �Ambassadors of Song�, is probably the most travelled of the Welsh male voice choirs, often appearing on television and at engagements abroad.

Proceeds to aid restoration of the Lichfield Canal

Tickets �17.50 available from the Cathedral Bookshop, 01543 306150 or
Sue Williams or phone 01543 671427

(doors open at 18:45, reserved tickets can be collected at the door on the night)

By Terry Brown in aid of the Lichfield & Hatherton Silver Jubilee Appeal

Update. After an extremely successful appeal Terry had this to say:

 "Thanks to everyone who sponsored me on the Coast to Coast walk. When I first suggested it as a fund raiser, I set myself a target of �1000. A few eyebrows were raised, a few knowing looks were exchanged; nobody actually said �No chance�, but the doubts were there. As it happened, my hopes were exceeded, and thanks to people�s great generosity I was able to raise just over �2000. The walk itself was a great experience, a mixture of beautiful scenery, good companions and a great feeling of satisfaction. The weather through the Lake District was atrocious, with storm force winds and heavy rain at times, but after a few days it improved, and the journey through Swaledale was some of the most beautiful walking I�ve done. The last descent into Robin Hood�s Bay was quite emotional, having achieved a long-standing ambition. If any of you are considering doing the walk, please do so, it�s worth the effort."

Starts Saturday 13th April 2013

Terry Brown, our newest Director and Lichfield worksites manager, has set himself a challenge to walk from the west coast of England to the east coast. He'd like to raise �1,000 in sponsorship for the Trust. Can you help him do it?

The Coast to Coast Walk is an unofficial and mostly unsignposted long distance footpath in Northern England. Devised by Alfred Wainwright, it passes through three contrasting national parks: the Lake District National Park, the Yorkshire Dales National Park, and the North York Moors National Park.


From the Irish Sea at St Bees to the North Sea at Robin Hoods Bay, Wainwright�s Coast to Coast Walk passes through some of the most beautiful and varied scenery in the country: the rugged mountains and beautiful lakes of the Lake District, the rolling hills and pretty valleys of the Yorkshire Dales and the expansive heather moorland of the North York Moors, with some dramatic coastal scenery at each end.


I�m Terry Brown; I�ve been a Trust member and volunteer for 12 years, so I know how hard it is to raise money and how careful we are to spend it wisely. As this year marks our 25th anniversary I�ve decided to do a sponsored walk and am asking for your support. In the last 2 weeks in April I�m doing Wainwright�s Coast-to-Coast walk. At about 200 miles, and with a total ascent equivalent to climbing Everest, it�s described as �challenging�, but I�m confident of completing it. I know that simply by being a member you already contribute, and that many of you live a long way from Lichfield, so never get the chance to see the progress we�re making, but if you could make even a small donation it would mean a few more bricks in the wall. Please make any donations via the website, or send to Bob Williams at the address below.
Thank you for reading this appeal and, hopefully, for your support.


If you would like to sponsor Terry you can make an online donation with your debit or credit card using PayPal, or download a sponsorship form and send a cheque to the address below.

To donate online click on the "Donate" button below.
  If you are a taxpayer Gift Aid can make your donation worth more. For every �1 you give us we get an extra 25p from the Inland Revenue. Just select "yes" in the Gift Aid box below to allow us to reclaim tax on the amount you have paid. It�s that simple.
(You must pay an amount of Income Tax and/or Capital Gains Tax for each tax year that is at least equal to the amount of tax that the Trust will reclaim on your gifts for that tax year.)

Gift Aid

or download the sponsorship form below and send with your cheque to:-

Bob Williams
Lichfield & Hatherton Canals Restoration Trust
Norfolk House, 29 Hall Lane
Hammerwich, Burntwood
Staffs WS7 0JP

To download a printable sponsorship form


Notice is hereby given that the 23rd Annual General Meeting of
Lichfield & Hatherton Canals Restoration Trust Limited will be held at
Park View Centre, Chester Road North, Brownhills, WALSALL, WS8 7JB
on Friday 7th June 2013 at 7.15pm


  1. Apologies
  2. Minutes of the 22nd Annual General Meeting 15/06/2012
  3. Matters Arising
  4. Directors' Report
  5. Treasurer's Report and Presentation of Accounts for the year ending 31st December 2012
  6. Chairman's Report
  7. Election of Directors:
    (a) Directors retiring by rotation and eligible for re-election:
      Michael Battisson
      Robert Mullarkey
      Robert Williams
    (b) Directors co-opted during the year and nominated by Council for election:
      Terence Edwin Brown
    (c) Any other nominations received
  8. Appointment of Auditor: Dains - Chartered Accountants
  9. Any Other Business
  10. Close of formal business
  11. Guest Speaker: Dr Geraint Coles, Development Manager at Chesterfield Canal Partnership
    "How NOT to restore a canal - experiences and pitfalls from the Chesterfield Canal!"

After the AGM, tea and biscuits will be served with an opportunity to view displays and sales material.

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