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New maps highlight Yorkshire’s best waterside walks

05 November 2021
Exploring Yorkshire’s beauty spots and topping-up the feel-good factor during the darker autumn and winter months is now even easier thanks to a new initiative by rail operator Northern and Canal & River Trust, the waterway and wellbeing charity that looks after 2,000 miles of canals and rivers in England and Wales.

Northern has teamed up with the canal charity to highlight some of Yorkshire’s best waterside walks which are easily accessed by train.  New large-scale signage and handy maps detailing linear waterside walking routes, local landmarks and attractions are now available to pick up in five train stations along the Leeds & Liverpool Canal: Saltaire, Shipley, Bingley, Skipton and Keighley.

Having regular access to blue and green spaces has significant wellbeing benefits for everyone. Spending time by water, really can make people happier and healthier. The Trust’s research shows that the 2,000-mile network provides around £1billion of savings to the NHS each year through health and wellbeing benefits offered to everyone.

Nicola Christian, Business & Corporate Engagement Partner at Canal & River Trust said: “Research shows that spending time by water helps us to relax and boost our ‘feel good’ factor.  Canals and rivers are fantastic places to get away from life stresses, enjoy connecting with nature, and spending time with friends and family. The railway network offers the perfect opportunity to explore our 200-year old canals and enjoy the wellbeing benefits of being by water. 

“On a visit to a canal you may have noticed that there is inevitably a railway close to hand.  Many railways followed established canal routes to avoid the expensive construction of tunnels, bridges and aqueducts or viaducts.  While often regarded historically as rivals, our partnership with Northern shows the ways these engineering feats complement one another, offering a greener way to travel.”

Tony Baxter, Regional Director at Northern said: “It’s so easy to access our canals and rivers by train – but not that many people know just how easy it is.

“The new maps show off some of North Yorkshire’s best beauty spots and will inspire people to get outside and walk by the waterside.

“Our vision is to make a positive impact in the north of England and we are delighted to be working with the Canal & River Trust to encourage our customers to get outside, enjoy our waterways, and ‘go do their thing’.”

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