Friday, 29 April 2016

Bank Holiday weekend Canalway Cavalcade, Little Venice

Narrowboats from all over the country are gathering in Little Venice, near London’s Paddington Station, this weekend for the annual Canalway Cavalcade. It’s held in the pool, where the Grand Union and Regent’s Canal meet. The free event, which runs from April 30 to May 2, 2016 is now more than 30 years old. It brings plenty of very British fun, with Morris dancing, bunting, music, stalls and entertainment for youngsters, as you can see from these photos of last year’s event.
The Cavalcade, organised by the Inland Waterways Association, is a celebration of a great success story. Almost 200 years ago the canals were the motorways of their day, transporting goods and people across the country during the Industrial Revolution. Then in the 1820s came the railways, with faster and cheaper options. Canals, especially rural ones, fell into disuse, and many were closed. But after WW2, people began to appreciate the leisure opportunities they offered. The IWA was formed to campaign for their continued use, and has been pivotal in restoration of the network.

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