About The Lapal Canal Trust

Lapal Canal Trust
Published by Hugh Humphreys

Yesterday the Canal & River Trust kindly invited the Lapal Canal Trust to visit/inspect progress on canal works in the Selly Oak Shopping Park. Thanks to Jack Reilly, Interserve construction manager, for showing us around The work is nearing completion. They have done a very nice job of the brickwork in the undercroft area and the fence next to the canal has been especially nicely designed, the canal will be clearly seen through the fence, Photos show the fence we want moving and the huge amount of soil (some 6500 cubic metres ) to be moved to convert the Greenway into a canal. Hope you can make sense of the photos. Please add comments if you have any questions. More pics at FB page.

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January 7, 2019

Canal Boat magazine February issue now available has an excellent article by their restoration specialist and deputy editor Martin Ludgate about our project. Having read the article my wife commented that she now understands what we are trying to do. Martin also supports the work of the Waterways Recovery Group of the Inland Waterways Association and is an expert brick layer! Pictures are from the article showing the under croft being built also Martin helping with our 2016 work camp. So please buy the magazine or alternatively you can download a copy of the article from our web site. http://www.lapal.org/reports/ 

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NEW  Donate 0.5% of your Amazon purchases to the Trust

Go to https://smile.amazon.co.uk/ch/1013845-0

Always use smile.amazon for your purchases. Thank you

Help us to restore the Dudley No 2 Canal, a new feature in Selly Oak, Birmingham

The total cost will be £2m. As part of a community support agreement Sainsbury’s and their partner Landsec have spent £750.000 on infrastructure and will contribute £500,000 towards completing the canal

We need to raise £750,000 to finish the work. Please help make a difference.

The Lapal Canal Trust was formed to restore the Dudley No 2 canal from Selly Oak to Halesowen, we are now focused on restoring the canal from Selly Oak to California, the funding we seek is for the first and most important link. Help us to preserve our heritage for future generations to appreciate and enjoy. The next stage will be the canal in Selly Oak park. The canal will encourage wildlife and to be enjoyed by walkers, cyclists, boaters, canoeists and anglers. The restoration of the canal has broad support including local community groups, councillors, MP’s and MEP’s

Andy Street the Mayor of the West Midlands combined Authority comments “I am hugely welcoming of your restoration project,it would be a brilliant addition to Birmingham.”

Saqib Bhatti the newly elected president of the Greater Birmingham Chambers of Commerce writes, “Since its establishment in 1813, the Chamber has always been supportive of the development of canals in Birmingham: first for commerce, and now as a major tourist attraction. Walkers and cyclists will gain a new city centre access route away from busy roads.”

We are looking for wellbeing activities. support from Individuals, the many successful companies in Birmingham, and the charities that support environmental, heritage endeavours.

You can donate with the DONATE button on this site


Published by Hugh HumphreysDecember 1 at 1:57 PM

Big thanks to Interserve’s Jack Reilly for arranging for us to take pictures of the canal from the new 18 story Unite Student Accommodation building. We have indicated the canal route. We estimate we have to remove over 7000 cubic metres of soil, also rebuild the path at a lower level to create a tow path. We are making progress with our fundraising campaign to raise the £700,000 we need to complete this section and achieving our £2m target to restore the canal to the end of Selly Oak Park. Donations via our web site www.lapal.org

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Sainsbury’s store is opening on Wednesday, 21 Nov., Photos taken yesterday of progress of the canal route across the site. Canal route largely completed, still working on the section under the goods delivery yard, thanks to Arthur for photo. To convert to a canal the Lapal Trust will be responsible for removing about 7500 cubic metres of soil and unfortunately having to remake the path which is up to one metre too high.

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We have just sent out our press release announcing our campaign to raise £2m to complete the canal from the Worcester Birmingham canal to the end of Selly Oak Park. This includes the 340m section across the new Selly Oak Shopping Park and the 450m section from Harborne Wharf to the west end of Selly Oak park. The route across the Shopping Park has been secured by the developer who has also agreed to sheet metal pile both sides of the canal and the winding hole and to contribute £500k to finish the work which includes removing the soil, making the canal waterproof and building a tow path swing bridge at the junction. The Trust needs to raise a further £700,000 for this first section to be completed which is included in the £2m. For anyone able to help there is a donation section on our website www.lapal.org

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On Oct., 4, there was a meeting arranged for our local MP Preet Gill to meet members of the Calthorpe Residents Association. Very well attended with interesting presentation and lots of questions. Thanks to Liz Dancey for arranging for us to have a table for our display stand and brochures. Our first outing for our new fundraising display with lots of interest; also, an opportunity for our President Dr Peter Best is giving Preet a progress report.

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Notice of Annual General Meeting

NOTICE IS GIVEN that the Annual General Meeting of the Lapal Canal Trust will be held on Monday, ​​​​​​22 October, 2018 at 7.30 pm in the new Sense TouchBase Pears building in Selly Oak, 750 Bristol Road South, B29 6NA (Opposite Battery Retail Park and Sainsbury’s) There is a large car park at the rear


Thanks to Interserve Directors David Holmes and Jack Reilly for a tour of the canal works. The undercroft area is impressive and they are busy laying a reinforced concrete floor. The sheet metal piled wall next to the Battery retail park is complete, and you can clearly see the route to and from Harborne Lane Bridge. One can easily imagine how the canal will look when completed, it will be a significant customer attraction for the shops. Such a pity that at this stage its only a Greenway, however now the picture is clearer we are focusing our attention on raising the money needed to complete the work.

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Waterway Recovery Group  for 2019

We have asked the IWA Waterway Recovery Group to consider helping us next summer to restore the 220-year old bridge in Selly Oak Park. Hugh and Peter met with Mikk, Ian. Alex and IWA consulting engineer John Heather to inspect the bridge and advise on a repair scheme

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WALK the LINE   2018  

Delighted to see a large group joining this year’s ‘Walk the Line’ along the canal route from Selly Oak to Halesowen. Perfect walking weather, great to meet old friends and make new ones, just a pity about the sore feet! Thanks all the walkers, to Tony for organising and Dr Peter Best and Roy Burgess for leading the walk and explaining places of interest. At the journey’s end thanks to Helen and Jill for cups of tea and beautiful cakes. A perfect day.

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RECENT SUCCESSES  (see also  “Press Releases” under “The Canal” at menu, top-right)

Thanks to Landsec and Interserve for up to date photos, the approximate position of paths and canal have been added. There is a concrete canal channel to be built in the covered area, main photo, that runs underneath the goods delivery yard. Most of the sheet metal piling should be installed. Unfortunately, there will be a lot of soil left on the canal route (estimated at 6000 cubic metres) which we will have to remove


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Published by Hugh HumphreysJune 1 at 3:13 PM

Thanks to Chris Fleetwood the Trust has just received 4 new photos from Landsec/Interserve showing the current status of progress with Canal works .Main change is that the area below the goods delivery yard has now been covered. The route of the canal has been marked, very approximate!

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Thanks again to Jon and his team of Sense carers for arranging a very enjoyable boat trip for disabled people from Selly Oak to Brindley Place. 
Hot news – the Battery site development is being sold by Landsec to Prudential’s M&G Real Estate for £94m.

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Lapal Canal Trust

Topographical survey by Midland Survey of the proposed Marina site in Barnes Hill/California. This forms part of the wider Feasibility Study being completed by Moss Naylor Young. The survey completed by Lewis Reilly and his colleague assisted by Peter of LCT will give us spot heights on a 10m grid and the height every 20m of the 2250m route to Selly Oak Park.


The topographical survey needed an extra day as the tree cover made the process more time consuming, quite difficult to get line of sight through the trees. Lewis and Joe arrived from Leeds on Thursday, a day early, which was very fortunate as it rained heavily all-day Friday. Measurements included where possible the canal base as well as the path. Invaluable when estimating the soil to be removed. Results expected next week and will be included in the Feasibility Study. Midland Survey generously met the cost of the extra day.


 Restoring the Dudley the No 2 Canal across the former Battery Site

in Selly Oak Birmingham.

Lapal Canal Trust

Progress photos of Battery Site, thanks to Arthur Moppett. Photos show steel work to enable the undercroft to be covered over, also more progress on the route to Harborne Lane Bridge.

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First section of sheet metal piling installed before Harborne Lane bridge. Progress on the student accommodation fronting the Worcester Birmingham Canal, and some heavy lifting. Thanks to Arthur Moppettand Interserve /Landsec for photos of current activity


Press Release 28th of February 2018

 Restoring the Dudley the No 2 Canal across the former Battery Site

in Selly Oak Birmingham.

Since appointing Interserve as the main contractor in the summer of 2017 the Harvest Partnership of Sainsbury’s and Landsec is making very good progress in developing the Battery Site. They have just started work on canal enabling works to allow the canal to cross the site when it is reinstated and joins the Worcester & Birmingham Canal

The original canal route was not economically viable, so a new 340m route running alongside the edge of the new Selly Oak Shopping Park was agreed between the Harvest Partnership and Birmingham City Council, with the Canal and River Trust advising as statutory consultee. Prior to accepting the plans there was a period of public consultation with illustrative reports, subject to detailed design development, from consultants Glenn Howells showing how the scheme may look and from Mace indicating a possible method of excavation when the development was completed. (The reports are included as condition 95 of the planning permission ref 2013/02178/PA). With a section 106 agreement in place the route and the winding hole is protected. Additionally, the developers are committed to spend £2,907,000 on “Canal Enabling Works”. The canal work includes amongst other things the bridge over the Worcester & Birmingham Canal, sheet metal piling both sides of the canal and the winding hole, and a concrete undercroft allowing the canal to pass underneath Sainsbury’s goods delivery yard. Included in the £2.9m is a sum of £500k as a contribution to a “canal procurement entity” to complete the “canal delivery works”, which include removing the soil from between the sheet metal piling and the winding hole (for boats to turn and enter the canal), lowering the services under the tow path, replacing a section of the tow path with a swing bridge at the junction with the Worcester & Birmingham Canal, and any other item to complete the canal.

The development includes a very large Sainsbury’s store, several smaller shop units, and an 18-storey student accommodation tower.

Thank you to Lapal Canal Trust committee member Arthur Moppett for regular photos recording the rapid progress being made on site. A temporary bridge over the Worcester & Birmingham canal has been built between the offices and the main site

Please follow progress on our web site www.lapal.org and www.facebook.com/lapalcanaltrust

For queries and  photos please contact

Hugh Humphreys, nbhugh@gmail.com

Lapal Canal Trust, Tel 07970 766554


The Lapal Canal Trust (LCT) was formed in 1990 when a group of inland waterway enthusiasts realised the restoration potential for the Dudley No. 2 Lapal Canal. Their initiating and persistent vision was that the use of modern engineering methods and materials would make it entirely feasible to reclaim the missing link between Hawne Basin and Selly Oak, via the long-disused but hugely-intriguing Lapal Tunnel.
Restoration would bring with it a host of benefits for the local community living alongside the canal as well as being a new route for boaters.

In 1997, following the restoration by Dudley Council of a section of the canal running through Leasowes Park, the Lapal Canal Trust commissioned Engineering and Design Consultants, Atkins, to produce a feasibility study.

Atkins Study (2007) found that the cost of restoring the Lapal Tunnel were prohibitive and recommended an alternative route going ‘over the top’ through Woodgate Valley. Dreams of restoring the tunnel were put aside and the new plan was embraced.

And so, The Lapal Canal Trust is determined to restore the derelict half of the Dudley No. 2 Canal from Selly Oak to Hawne Basin, incorporating a new ‘over the top’ route, which would provide even greater amenity benefits for the local community

Trust Objectives

  1. Persuade local authorities, government departments and other interested statutory or non-statutory bodies of the benefits and feasibility of restoration
  2. Persuade land-owners and the public of the benefits and feasibility of restoration
  3. Secure and protect the line of the Canal
  4. Create partnerships with public and private sectors that will facilitate restoration of the Canal
  5. Implement an agreed programme for the restoration of the Canal or any part of it

Please click HERE to see the committee members