Manchester Canal

Manchester Canal

Joe Roper Photography

About the project

PROJECT TITLE: Manchester Canal

LOCATION: Manchester

FUNDING: Awarded £123,320 from the Green Recovery Challenge Fund

PARTNERS: Canal and River Trust

The idea

As part of this project the Canal and River Trust will be providing a series of floating reed-islands in Piccadilly Basin to green the city’s waterways. This will provide essential wildlife habitat in a heavily engineered environment with limited space for nature. Not only do the islands provide a way for local communities to engage with the nature around them, but they also filter and improve the canal’s water quality.

The proposed reed-islands will provide quality blue space for the city totalling around 20 hectares, including 150m2 of reedbed containing nearly 500 aquatic plants in a highly urban environment. As well as this, over 20 pocket gardens will be enhanced or created to provide quiet spaces for people.  

These key green spaces in Manchester City Centre encourage wildlife and create habitat corridors for creatures to move safely across the city. Green and blue space is proven to reduce antisocial behaviour and allows residents and visitors to engage with Manchester’s nature.

This project will provide dedicated staff time to build upon and kickstart relationships in a challenging environment. The project will help transform an urban built environment into a diverse, safe and valued blue and green space that meets the ambitions in the Greater Manchester Five-Year Environment Plan. The space is not currently seen as a quiet haven for wildlife and people, but the project aims to turn this around.

As a result of this project, the habitats within the City Centre canals will be in a better condition with long-term plans in place to ensure they stay that way.