Today, Canal & River Trust officially announced their charity status. No longer the British Waterways – a government-run body – the Canal & River Trust has officially launched as a charitable organisation. And players of People's Postcode Lottery are supporting the charity in their venture.

Through the Postcode Green Trust, players of People's Postcode Lottery have awarded £100,000 to the newly formed Trust. The funding will help the charity maintain the 2,000 miles of canals and rivers throughout England and Wales. It will support two projects in particular; the Guillotine Lock and the moorings in Hackney Cut, River Lee. The money will contribute to comprehensive repair works which will enable the restorations of the locks.

We are delighted to support the Canal & River Trust,” said Clara Govier, Head of Charities at People's Postcode Lottery. “The canals are an integral part of the landscape of England and Wales. Together, we can preserve these historical sites for generations to come.

Once the arteries of the industrial revolution, the canals and waterways fell into disuse. For decades, they were seen as derelict and dangerous. However, more recently, steps have been taken to transform them into beautiful sources of wildlife and leisure opportunities. Birmingham, which hosts more miles of canal than Venice, has transformed a rundown section of the city's canals into a fashionable hub for nightlife and up-market shopping.

As well as People’s Postcode Lottery, Google and The Co-operative have also pledged their support. Google put the UK's canal tow paths and cycle paths onto Google Maps yesterday, as part of a campaign to promote sustainable travel.

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