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Access to waterways

British Canoeing is working hard to improve access to and along all our waterways – from rivers and canals to lakes and the coast.

We work closely with a wide range of organisations, partnerships, navigation authorities and environmental agencies to promote the interests of canoeists and kayakers, and the need for greater recognition of access rights.

The legal position for paddlers continues to be a disputed topic, and we are working to secure greater recognition of the research conducted in the past 15 years which has challenged previous assumptions regarding the public’s right to navigate our waterways.

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To improve access for paddlers, our Waterways and Environment Department is actively involved with issues such as access, regulation and legislation. Our dedicated team of Regional and Local Waterways Advisors have an essential role in providing local knowledge on canoeing matters to British Canoeing staff and members.

We are passionate about encouraging paddlers to enjoy our waterways responsibly in ways that are compatible with the conservation of the environment and wildlife. We are dedicated to making canoeing and kayaking a sport that is enjoyable for all in all walks of life.

So what do we get involved in? There are a multitude of issues related to the waterways, both inland and coastal, which require our involvement, to support the access issue and to develop relationships with external organisations with whom we wish to promote and develop sustainable canoeing in England.

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