Volunteering Work on the Hereford and Gloucester Canal
The Herefordshire and Gloucestershire Canal Trust is restoring the Canal as a navigable waterway, which, when completed, will rank as one of the most attractive cruising routes in the country.
The Trust has a number of very enthusiastic teams of volunteers working at various locations along the whole line of the canal from Gloucester to Hereford.
Would you like to get involved with the Canal’s Restoration?
Types of work undertaken by our volunteers – Behind the Scenes …
Volunteering does not have to involve mud and mortar. People with desk-top, telephone and computer skills are also greatly valued:
- Project planning and development – estimators, quantity surveyors, land surveyors, engineers of all disciplines – civil, structural, highways, environmental or drainage, ecologists, architects / building surveyors, town planners etc. Please contact our Projects Team
- Identifying and reviewing planning applications that affect the line of the canal – which theoretically is protected from adverse development – Please contact our Land and Environment Team
- Design, marketing and promoting – see section on Sales Team below – Please contact our Sales Team
- Legal work, accounting and Office support – help with the operation of the Trust – dealing with post, assisting board members with the processing of bills, responding to issues with Trust properties and other matters as they arise. Much of this can potentially be done from home, with occasional visits to Trust HQ – Please contact our Admin Team
- Fundraising and bidding for grant aid – we urgently need help to form a team for occasional fundraising events and in identifying and applying for grant funding – Please contact our Fundraising Team
- Researching local canal history and running our archives
- and so the list goes on !!
… and on Restoration Sites:
You could be involved with some of these tasks:
- Building and repairing structures like locks, bridges and aqueducts
- Engineering and Surveying
- Towpath maintenance and undergrowth clearance
- Tree planting, grass cutting, chain sawing\u00a0and fence erecting
- Gardening, path laying and recycling
- Drystone walling, mixing mortar, brick-laying or concreting
- Driving dumpers, bulldozers or excavators
- Boat maintenance
- Painting and decorating
- and so the list goes on again !!
Who gets involved as a volunteer?
With so many opportunities to use a wide range of skills many people join us as volunteers.
- People looking for work who know adding volunteer experience to their CV is beneficial
- Retired people with a range of very useful skills to share or who just like to keep busy
- Young people doing their Duke of Edinburgh Awards, usually at Gold Level.
- People who work in an office all week but need some fresh air and exercise at weekend. They treat volunteering as a ‘green gym’.
- People who wish to learn new skills or who want to make new friends.
- Companies wanting to undertake valuable team building outside their work environment.
- … and yes, even people who, quite literally, want to see our Canal Restored!
- You too could help as a volunteer for the H&G CT!
Training and support is always available depending on the tasks being undertaken.
Many of our volunteers come to us with a wealth of knowledge and experience from past jobs and hobbies. We are very pleased when this knowledge can be shared with other volunteers and is of great benefit to the H&G CT.
We can not accept volunteers under the age of 17 but we have no upper age limit.
Health and safety
We have experienced team leaders in charge of each site and volunteers are required to work under their leadership. Tasks are risk assessed and safety helmets and vizi-jackets are provided, as well as other safety gear depending on the nature of the task. The Trust takes health and safety very seriously; an H&S officer for the Trust inspects the sites on a regular basis.
How to get Involved:
Membership of the Trust
Although it is not essential that our volunteers are also members of the Trust there are very few occasions when volunteers are not enthused enough to also want to become part of our organisation. Subscriptions are not high and your joining helps to show a strength of support with grant aid bids and liaising with other organisations.
See our Join the Trust pages for more details on becoming a Member.
The Trust has a number of sites where volunteers work on a regular basis. We also have new sites developing each year. Some of our volunteers stick to a particular location whilst others prefer to go where they are needed along the line of the Canal.
- Oxenhall and Newent – (Tuesdays) – Recent work here has seen the completion of the restoration of the lock chamber, as well as restoration of the Ell Brook Aqueduct and more recently clearance of the former Newent railway station site. Work going forward will focus on re-construction of a completely missing lock chamber at Oxenhall, and development of the boat lift plan for Newent.
- Malswick – (Tuesdays)
- Over Basin/Vineyard Hill (Gloucester) – (Thursdays) This is our largest site. Work includes maintenance of the site and equipment, projects to develop and enhance site facilities. Work also includes an engineering workshop, trip boat refurbishing. Volunteers are currently restoring some heritage boats. Recent work includes restoration of a new 300m length of canal at Vineyard Hill that is now in water. Towpath building, a new spill weir and much planting and landscaping.
- Yarkhill (Herefordshire) – Thursdays – present work includes: Canal bank profiling, conservation, logging and general site maintenance.
- Kymin East (Herefordshire) – Work here is undertaken on an intermittent basis as needed.
- Aylestone Park (Hereford) – Work here and elsewhere in the Hereford locality is undertaken on an intermittent basis as needed.
Helping on our Sales Stand – Promoting the canal restoration
You could help us to publicise the Hereford and Gloucester Canal by attending local and national events with our stands, and raising money for the Canal restoration. Or you could be involved with our own open day and festival events.
Skills like …
advertising • selling • giving talks • events management • making cakes • website design • running craft stands • talking to the public, all help us a great deal.
Raising funds and awareness of this important project is vital for the progress of the Canal’s restoration. Our Sales and Information Stand can be seen at many Waterways and Country Shows during the year.
We have two small teams of volunteers based at Hereford and Gloucester to cover both local and national events. Come and visit, or better still, join us on the stand?
Why not have a good day out with the H&G CT?
We cannot promise that you will see the world with us but you may visit an area that is new to you – and we always do our utmost to ensure that you have some time to look around (and your admission to the event will be free!
We urgently need additional volunteers to help us at these interesting events. Our small but well-established teams will make you very welcome! Please Contact Us to discuss where and when you can get involved.