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12-03-2013 : WATER VOLES ON A CANAL BOAT HOLIDAY

Canal Boat Holiday guests cruising the Grand Union Canal may be in with a better change of spotting a water vole.

Hanwell Lock Flight on the Grand Union Canal is a Scheduled Ancient Monument and the most impressive lock flight in London.

The area is a haven for wildlife and the local community and now, thanks to volunteers and funding from the players of the People’s Postcode Lottery, is set to become home to the humble water vole.

Immortalised as Ratty in Wind in the Willows, the water vole was once common on the nation’s waterways but population numbers have plummeted in recent decades.

The work being completed is vital for establishing new habitat for the at risk mammal and will, importantly, connect the canal with an adjacent colony of water voles in a nearby pond.

The water vole habitat creation work at Hanwell on the Grand Union Canal is also being supported by Ealing Rangers and the Friends of Hanwell Flight, who regularly meet at the lock flight to undertake a range of activity to help look after this important London landmark.

Rebecca Williams, volunteer team leader for the Canal and River Trust, comments Everyone is welcome to come along and do something good for the canal and very significant for London’s water vole population.

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