We respond to Torfaen County Borough Council’s Draft Canal Strategy and Action Plan

Torfaen County Borough Council recently published their Draft Strategy and Action Plan for the Mon & Brec canal through Cwmbran. We posted about the Council’s consultation earlier in May 2023.

As the Monmouthshire, Brecon and Abergavenny Canals restoration charity we warmly welcome the initiative that Torfaen County Borough Council (“TCBC”) has started. The appointment of a full-time Canal Officer and now this 10 year Strategic document provides a template for neighbouring canal owning authorities to follow. Given the limited resources that the Council has, and the fact that there is only one dedicated Canal Officer, we recognise the thought, effort and time that has gone into the Strategy document.

We are also grateful that TCBC recognises our skill and experience as part of the Torfaen Canal Partnership, and as a partner working with volunteers. MBACT will work very closely at all levels with the Council, and with partners, to actively support Torfaen CBC in its vision for the canal. Whilst supporting the core aims of the document we have some concerns regarding the details. In particular we have commented on overall approach and methodology, stakeholder support, programme phasing and funding, governance structure and council support, and we have concerns about possible detriment to ongoing maintenance and wider objectives.

The Council’s Draft Strategy document can be viewed here:

Our full response to the Draft Strategy can be viewed here as a PDF document: