Grand Union - Wendover Arm and Buckingham Canal
The Wendover Arm Trust was formed in 1989 to restore the unnavigable section of the canal.
The first half-mile from the former stop lock at Little Tring to a new basin/winding hole was opened for navigation in 2005, producing a total navigable length of about 1½ miles. Restoration of the next 1½ miles from Little Tring to Drayton Beauchamp is ongoing with two footbridges completed and approximately 850 yards rewatered. A further 750 yards have been excavated and lined.
The historic pumping station site at Whitehouses is being restoredand the trust will complete and fund further required works. Depending on the weather, this work is planned to be finished during 2020. This is a site of archaeological interest and an operational feature for taking surplus water into Wilstone Reservoir.Work has now started with restoring a heritage swing-bridge brick structure in connection with the stop lock and bridge lining. The swing-bridge wall is one of the fewremainingrelics of an ancient highway that fell into disuse when the reservoirs were built.
Buckingham Canal Society was given full go-ahead for the restoration of Bridge 1 at Cosgove in mid-2019 and progress has been swift since then.
The main structure of the bridge is now in place with the expectation that the road deck will be complete and the crossing opened to farm traffic again in the first half of 2020. Once this is achieved the waterway under the bridge can be restored and the Cosgrove section re-linked to the Grand Union. Rewatering and dredging have proceeded to almost halfway towards the A5.
The restored section at Bourton Meadow in Buckingham is now a popular local attraction and is thriving environmentally with multiple endangered species appearing in the vicinity.
Buckingham Canal Nature Reserve at Hyde Lane, which BCS leases from the local wildlife trust, is being rewatered as and when water levels and sun (for the solar pump) permit. Design work is in progress with the neighbouring landowners and CRT, as well as the district council, to pursue opportunities for construction of a new 3-mile link for the Buckingham Arm between Cosgrove, Old Stratford and Passenham, to replace that lost to housebuilding.