Charity calls for help as vandals repeatedly target Wolverhampton canal locks

The Canal & River Trust, is appealing for the help of the police and the wider community after vandals have targeted locks on the Main Line Canal in Wolverhampton.

For the last month the Trust has dealt with several incidents of vandalism which have caused damage to the 21 locks after they have been drained of water.

These incidents closed the canal to boaters  and caused harm to fish. Fixing and repairing the locks has cost the charity thousands of pounds, whilst the latest incident  last weekend also caused a local road to be flooded near to the Wolverhampton Science Park.

Despite the locks already having ‘anti-vandal’ locks installed, vandals opened the lock paddles and gates causing a total of more than 840,000 litres of water to drain away – which is the same amount of water as 8,400 bathtubs. Canal & River Trust spokesman, Aaron Atwal said:

“In a year which has seen widespread drought, this is such a waste of valuable water and our charity’s time and resources when we could be working to protect and improve our canals, not responding to mindless vandalism.

“I’m not sure why someone would go out of their way to purposely empty the water from the canal, but it can cause a lot of damage to the historic brickwork. The canal and locks are over 200 years old and part of local history of Wolverhampton. The water helps to protect these precious heritage structures.

“We’re working with the local Police to step up patrols along the canal to prevent this activity from continuing as well as looking at any further ways to prevent vandals from operating the locks.

“These incidents not only harm the community’s historic waterways and damage local wildlife but pose a real risk to local homes and businesses, so if anyone has any further information, please contact Wolverhampton Police or call us on 03030 404040.”


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