Waterway Recovery Group

Waterway Recovery Group

Waterway Recovery Group

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The Waterway Recovery Group (WRG), founded in 1970, is the national co-ordinating body for voluntary labour on the inland waterways of the United Kingdom.


WRG run a series of canal camps each year – typically week-long and open to volunteers of all ages and abilities. The canal camps are 'working holidays' working towards restoring canals and navigable waterways throughout the country. There are many such camps throughout the Summer, and WRG even run a Christmas camp, which runs over Christmas Day and Boxing Day.

WRG currnetly owns a fleet of vans, and a range of plant including excavators, dumpers, pumps, mixers, winches, and other sundry equipment.

WRG have regional groups across England, who co-ordinate weekend visits to restoration projects. The current local groups are London, Essex, East midlands, North west, South west and Bit In The Middle (mostly the south midlands). The WRG publishes a newsletter titled "Navvies" six times a year.

Although originally formed as an independent body, WRG is now a division of the Inland Waterways Association. The IWA currently covers WRG's core costs, however WRG still relies on fundraising and voluntary donations to cover its restoration aims.

Since 1996 the chairman of WRG has been Mike Palmer.

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