Page 1 of 3
THE update published yesterday (Tuesday) by the Trustees of the Canal & River Trust, contains details of its activities so far, including reduction in Directors remuneration, and we reproduce the update in full.
As everyone probably now knows, the Canal & River Trust formally took over responsibility for British Waterways' canals and rivers in England and Wales on the 2nd July.
The British Waterways (Transfer of Functions) Order 2012 obtained unanimous approvals from scrutiny committees in both the House of Commons and House of Lords which were then followed by an uncontested approval from the whole of the House of Commons. This excellent result demonstrated the level of support for the creation of the Trust within Parliament. We very much appreciate the assistance of many Parliamentarians who have supported us throughout the whole process.
We launched the Trust on the 12th July with press and stakeholder events in all of the 12 Waterway Partnerships around the country. We had excellent support on the day and some great national and local media coverage with the lighting up of the Pontcysyllte Aqueduct getting particular attention.
Our main focus now is to get our fundraising activities off to a great start. David Suchet, John Craven, Timothy West and Miranda Krestovnikoff have already signed up as our first Friends and we hope and expect many more to do so by the end of the summer. We have been very heartened by the first few weeks of our campaign with both numerous donations to our appeals and a steady flow of Friends enrolment.
Although fundraising will not deliver significant additional income for another few years under our 15 year Funding Agreement every penny we earn will stay with us and will not result in grant reductions as in the past.
We held a second successful council meeting on the 4th July at the Hub in Birmingham. Council received a presentation on Water Resource Management from Adam Comerford, the Trust's Head of Water Resource Management. Council then discussed and commented on key issues that would influence the forthcoming revision of the Trust's Water Resource Strategy.
Council also discussed and agreed various matters relating to its future conduct of meetings.
All the Partnerships are now up and running. Many members have attended one of a series of national briefing days where senior managers have explained the Trust's policies and programmes across a very wide range of activities. These briefings have been very well received and opened many eyes to the breadth of the Trust's work and the commitment and expertise of the staff.
A good example of how the Partnerships are adding value is in the North West. Steve Rumbelow is Chief Executive of Burnley Borough Council and a Waterway Partnership member. He has invited our senior town planner, Heather Clarke, to address the Pennine Lancashire Chief Executive's Strategy Unit on the draft East Lancashire Strategic Waterway Plan. This is excellent exposure for our local waterways and an exceptional opportunity to engage important local opinion formers. Each Waterway Partnership is now fully engaged in preparing their own 10 year strategic plan to guide activity in their area. We are making excellent progress in appointing experts to our group of Advisory Committees.