- Viewing restored canal as a backland 'moat', this will maximise the number of offside dwellings that benefit from "moat security" (and the likely increase in Property Value).
- Where the offside flank of a canal is an embankment above lower-lying properties, it may be reconstructed for a significantly greater mechanical integrity (than a towpath embankment) to minimise the risk of damage and water loss. (Also see the Flooding issue, below).
1 The Mission To restore to full working order as a navigable waterway, the derelict canal lying dormant between the Worcester & Birmingham Canal in Selly Oak and the Eastern Portal of the Lapal Tunnel in California. This is to be done under the aegis of the Lapal Canal Trust (LCT) whose full Vision is the complete restoration of the entire '5-mile' length of disused canal between Hawne Basin in Halesowen and the W&B in Selly Oak, via a new ‘Over The Top’ route to replace the derelict Lapal Tunnel. When completed, this will have restored the '11-mile' Dudley Number TwoCanal to its former strategic importance as a Navigation along a levelwaterway, without locks. The entire length of derelict line - now known as The Lapal Canal, since the formation of The Lapal Canal Trust in 1990 - conveniently divides into threerestoration Projects; TABLE This Plan for the restoration of the Eastern Approach or Selly Oak Extension Canal is one 'third' of the full Vision. It was prepared by the Eastern Approach Planning/Projects Group (EAPG; a sub-Committee of LCT) to indicate that restoration and subsequent preservation of the canal is a viable Mission. However, all recommendations contained herein are made in good faith andare subject to the future outcomes of detailed engineering surveys, public consultation, and the availability of sufficient funds. (The LCT has a complementary plan for the Halesowen canal, part of which - The Leasowes - has now been restored by Contractors, having officially commenced on Monday, 3rd March, 1997, but with extensive preparatory work conducted by LCT members prior to that date.) 2 The General Strategy : ("making ends meet") Translating this general strategy onto the Eastern Approach Project, a furtherthree principal sub-divisions of the incremental task have been identified, for restoration in the phased order; TABLE These principal divisions are fully defined and further sub-divided (e.g. LE1N) in a separate table . For the sake of Public Relations in the locality during restoration, these Eastern Approach sections, as they become navigable again, shall also be known by the erstwhile identity; The Selly Oak Extension Canal. (When fully re-opened, the title "California Canal" might be considered.) --> The Eastern Strategy. 3 The Towpath Issue : ("a walk on the wild side") In its heyday as a working canal, passing then through a largely rural setting, the towpath was installed on the north side for the entire length between theW&B and the Eastern Portal. Given the subsequent development of housing, now on both sides but predominantly on the northern flank where many of the properties are below water level, there are several sections where a south-sidetowpath would achieve a two-fold benefit;