Llangollen Canal

The Llangollen canal links three counties between England & Wales, from Hurleston Junction in Cheshire (near Nantwich), through Ellesmere in Shropshire and on to Llangollen in Denbighshire in Wales. Eleven miles of this picturesque route has now been classified as a UNESCO World Heritage site, which includes the Chirk and Pontcysyllte aqueducts. The water for the canal is fed from the River Dee at Horseshoe Falls near Llangollen and flows to Hurleston Junction reservoirs where it is used to supply water for local towns. With this flow of 12 million gallons per day, you may notice your boat slow down when heading into the flow and passing through restrictions such as Ellesmere tunnel and the two aqueducts and many bridges. The route covers 44 miles and 21 narrow locks, allowing passage of one boat at a time. There are three locks at Grindley Brook which form a staircase, each lock opening into the next lock and at busy periods, Canals and Rivers volunteers help with the passage of boats through the locks. There is a branch off the Llangollen canal at Frankton Junction, where the Montgomery canal used to connect through to Newtown via Llanymynech and Welshpool. There was also a proposed link to Shrewsbury which never came to fruition. The canal is currently under restoration and only 7 miles from Frankton Junction is navigable, but this has to be pre-arranged through Canals & Rivers, as only a few boats are allowed on the section and for a limited time period. The basin at Trevor on the Llangollen side of the Pontcysyllte aqueduct is where the extension was planned to go to Chester. The location of Karma Waters at Whixall Marina is off the old Prees branch, now only feeding the Marina and is adjacent to the Whixall and Bettisfield Fenns and Mosses, an area of historic peatland and National Nature Reserve.