The restoration of the Cotswold Canals - the Stroudwater Navigation (7 miles/12km) and the Thames & Severn Canal (29 miles/46km) - will see the connection of England`s two greatest rivers; the Thames and the Severn for the first time in over seventy years.
The Cotswold Canals shaped the landscape of the Stroud Valleys for nearly 200 years and their renaissance will do this once again.
The canals and towpaths are a special feature of the Stroud Valleys; walk any stretch of the towpath between Eastington and Sapperton, a distance of 12 miles, and you will experience peace and quiet away from busy roads.
The canal banks have become a linear nature reserve where you will see ducks, moorhen and dragonflies as well as the occasional flash of a kingfisher or an early morning deer.
Industrial heritage is also in evidence as you glimpse former Cotswold stone textile mills enroute.
A good place to start is the Canal Visitor Centre at Wallbridge in Stroud or Stroud Tourist Information Centre in the Subscription Rooms. A copy of the Towpath Map is available to purchase at the Canal Visitor Centre on-line shop, click here Stroudwater Canal & Thames & Severn Canal Towpath Map
Find out more about cycling the Stroudwater Canal. Visit the canal now and you will see it whilst restoration is underway.
Suggested places where you can find parking to start your walk include Victory Park in Ebley near Stroud (GL5 4LH); Cheapside in Stroud (GL5 2AD) close to the Canal Visitor Centre; London Road in Stroud (GL5 2AJ) where you can walk through the Waitrose car park to Capel's Mill; and Chalford.
This new walk from the Royal Geographical Society, along the towpath from Stroud to Stonehouse, tells the story of the Stroud Valley - from the past, present to the future. With plenty to observe along the way including mills, locks, bridges, warehouses, beautiful scenery and wildlife.
It is available in audio or downloadable format or can be purchased from the Canal Visitor Centre and Tourist Information Centre in Stroud.
Download the Walk - Cloth, Coal & Canals
The Cotswold Canals Trust
Join The Cotswold Canals Trust or become a volunteer. The Cotswold Canals Trust is a registered charity restoring the Cotswold Canals. You can get involved in this fantastic restoration project by becoming a member or a volunteer. Canal working parties take place during the week and at most weekends. There are even taster sessions for new volunteers.