Narrowboaters and cycling charity join Canal Co-op

Glasgow Canal Co-op has welcomed a new member and new associate member to its groups of organisations working to unlock the canal’s potential to create a vibrant area in the north of the city for people to live, work and visit.

Narrowboaters Glasgow, a representative organisation for boaters in the Glasgow area, became the Co-op’s 18th member, while Free Wheel North, a cycling charity based in Maryhill, has joined as an associate member.


Together they will work with existing members including Hamiltonhill Claypits Nature Reserve, Scottish Canals and others, on improving collaboration, utilising local skills and assets and developing new experiences for visitors and residents to the Forth and Clyde Canal between Pinkston and Firhill.

Colin Robertson of Narrowboaters Glasgow, said: “The members of Narrowboaters Glasgow live, work and play on the canal so we are looking forward to being involved in projects which benefit the local area. Not only do we have a unique connection with the canal, we have a range of experience to draw on to make the area covered by the Co-op even better than it already is.”

Norman Armstrong of Free Wheel North said: “By becoming an associate member of the Co-op we hope to work closely with others to help this part of north Glasgow reach its full potential. 

“Free Wheel North exists to enable everyone regardless of ability to enjoy outdoor space and activity, especially through cycling but for wheelchair users, pedestrians and children and are keen to work with others to ensure access, inclusion and community empowerment when it comes to enjoying the public space around the canal.”

Glasgow Canal Co-op Project Manager Anna Young said: “We would like to extend a warm welcome to our two newest members of the Glasgow Canal Co-op who join a diverse and passionate community of people working together along the canal. We look forward to collaborating with both of them to continue the ongoing regeneration of this unique and exciting part of the city.”

Call for material for Glasgow Canal archive

Social, cultural and environmental evolution of the Forth and Clyde Canal in Glasgow to be captured in digital resource

The Glasgow Canal Co-op is calling on local organisations to contribute to a new archive of the Forth and Clyde Canal, helping to collate and share north Glasgow’s social, cultural and environmental evolution over the last thirty years.

The project is looking to collate material on the role of communities, cultural activities, and environmental improvement work in the canal’s recent history. There have been many projects delivered in recent years which have explored  industrial canal heritage, so instead the Co-op is focusing on the relationship between the people of Glasgow and the precious waterway.

Evolving identity

Relevant projects from over the years, whether an event, art installation, oral history, performance, written piece, interpretation or exhibit, will be added to an accessible digital archive at to highlight the canal’s evolving identity.

The archive is backed by Historic Environment Scotland who wanted to support the Co-op’s plans to shine a light on some of the incredible social and cultural heritage projects which have taken place between Port Dundas and Firhill over the last three decades.

Anna Young, Project Manager at Glasgow Canal Co-op, said: “The canal space has undergone significant change in terms of how it is used, and by who, and how people feel about it. From working with our own Co-op members and other local organisations, we know that a broad range of projects have been delivered in connection with the canal. 

“We are keen to identify these valuable projects, collating them and reconnecting them with the canal and are asking for people’s help to bring them together in one place for people to access. It would be great to ensure all the fantastic work to regenerate the Glasgow Canal is featured and highlight the impact this has had on the people living and working around it.”

The Co-op is looking for material in a range of formats, from promotional materials and annual reports to photographs, video clips and website links, so they can capture what canal-related project have taken place, what they did, who was involved, the results and what happened next.  

Alongside the digital archive, the material could also be included as part of forthcoming events, a future exhibition or promotional campaign.

All material included will be properly credited and the team plan to work with organisations including the Mitchell Library to ensure that materials can be properly archived for the future.

Get involved

If you would like more information or to get involved, please email

Opportunity: Funding & Communications Officer

The Glasgow Canal Co-operative has secured funding to recruit a part-time, freelance Funding and Communications Officer to support the long term sustainability of the organisation.  The focus will be on the Glasgow Canal area, which stretches from Port Dundas up to Firhill Basin.

About the Co-op

The Glasgow Canal Co-op is a member led organisation which acts as facilitator and project instigator for a diverse range of members located by the Forth & Clyde Canal between Port Dundas and Firhill Basin.

Our members range from voluntary community organisations, social enterprises, cultural institutions to public bodies – giving one member one vote on decisions and creating a democratic and collective voice to inform how the area develops.  Our diverse membership includes Scottish Opera, The National Theatre of Scotland, Glasgow Sculpture Studios, Agile City, Pinkston Watersports, The Loading Bay Skatepark and Queens Cross Housing Association. 

The canalside has a wealth of assets with a unique heritage, tranquil green spaces and walkways focused around the Hamiltonhill Claypits Local Nature Reserve.

The role

We are looking to recruit a part-time Funding and Communications Officer who can support the project manager in key areas of activity. 

Communication is a central feature of this role as the successful applicant will lead on the organisation’s social media and digital profile and keep members updated. 

The post will also support fundraising through identifying funding opportunities and preparation of funding applications.

For more details on the role and how to apply:

Read the Funding and Communications Officer Job Description

Community shares fond feelings of life along the canal for crockery project

“Sunsets across the city”, “vital ecosystem”, “bees and butterflies dancing among the flowers” and “fishing with friends” are just some of the phrases members of the local community have used to describe their memories and experiences of the Forth and Clyde Canal in North Glasgow.

The submissions are all part of community crockery project run by food-based social enterprise Gathering Ground.

Gathering Ground will now use these precious stories and drawings of the canal to create a 90-piece hand-thrown crockery set which will be displayed at Gathering Ground in Old Basin House at Applecross Wharf and available to borrow by local community members.

People from across the local area got involved, including wee ones from Hamiltonhill Family Learning Centre and residents of Queen’s Cross Housing Association properties.

One member of the community wrote: a touching message which sums up the importance of the waterway to life in north Glasgow: “The canal unplugs me from the chaotic and noisy city and reminds me how important and vital an ecosystem like this is! From the bottom of my heart thank you! for taking care of it.”

The final crockery set will consist of plates, bowls, saucers, mugs and sharing platter and will be made by Kevin Callaghan, an award-winning sculptor based in Glasgow Sculpture Studios.

Vanessa Gilpin, Director of Gathering Ground, said: “We’re so grateful to everyone who has got involved in this special project which aims to explore how people identify with the Canal District, transferring these discoveries into everlasting pieces of hand-thrown crockery to be shared with the local community.

“It’s been a joy to uncover people’s experiences and memories. The next step is that we are going to get these printed onto decals and transferred onto the crockery items. We can’t wait to see the finished products and to see them used by others along the Glasgow canal.”

The project is funded by The National Lottery Heritage Fund and overseen by the Glasgow Canal Co-operative on behalf of Glasgow City Council.

The Gathering Ground were one of a selection of local groups and initiatives awarded a share of a £36,000 funding pot to helps the community explore and unlock the canal’s rich history and create exciting new activities across the area.

Funding Update – February

Funding to support response and resilience during Covid-19

Adapt & Thrive Programme

Grants and loans up to £250,000, as well as tailored specialist advice, are available to third sector organisations in Scotland for implementing organisational change needed to adapt to the challenges presented by the coronavirus/COVID-19 pandemic. Open for applications and runs until March 2021.

Business Hardship Fund

Glasgow City Council has allocated a further £4.467million to businesses in the city which aims to help businesses ineligible for any of the existing government business support schemes. The fund will go live on 5 February, and will be in operation until 19 February. It will offer three levels of payment based on company size: £9,000 for businesses employing between 25 and 50 staff; £6,000 for businesses employing between 10 and 24 staff; and £3,000 for businesses employing 9 staff or less.

Communities Recovery Fund

Grants up to £75,000 are available for third sector organisations in Scotland to support people and communities through the shift from lockdown to recovery and tackle the challenges presented by the coronavirus/COVID-19 pandemic.  The fund will support practical measures to support re-opening/re-shaping services.

Open for applications and runs until March 2021.

COVID-19 Response Fund

Grants are available to UK charities that demonstrate a strong focus on alleviating social deprivation and helping vulnerable groups who have been affected by the coronavirus pandemic. To receive a decision by October 2021 applications must be submitted between 1st January and 31st July 2021

 Response, Recovery & Resilience Fund

The Fund is open for applications up to £5,000 and the fund is now focussing on Resilience. The fund’s priority is supporting organisations with their long-term planning, helping them become more sustainable in the future, despite the continued uncertainty. The aims of the new Resilience phase are to:

  • Strengthen communities by improving their ability to respond to future and continued challenges due to the pandemic
  • Strengthen organisations to be sustainable in the longer term, through staff development of internal infrastructure
  • Support organisations to increase their service provision to meet growing needs

Hardship Funds for Artists

Bella Caledonia are posting a list of hardship funds and awards currently available to artists and freelancers in Scotland. 

Resilience and Recovery Loan Fund

This is a new fund for social enterprises and charities that are improving people’s lives across the UK who are experiencing disruption to their normal business model as a result of COVID-19. It has been established to make an existing government scheme, the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme, more easily accessible to charities and social enterprises. Deadline 31 March 2021.

 Coronavirus – information for businesses

The UK and Scottish Governments have announced a package of support to assist businesses. Glasgow City Council has a summary page of these where you can see what support is available for  individuals and organisations affected by coronavirus.

National Lottery Heritage Funding has reopened

The Fund is offering resilience and inclusion project funding to support organisations working with heritage to adapt and respond to the changing environment they are now operating in as follows:

  • Support organisations working with heritage to adapt and recover in the continuing coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis


  • Are focused on inclusion, led by and/or engaging diverse groups typically under-represented in heritage.

There are two levels of grant award – from £3,000 to £10,000 and from £10,000 to £100,000

OTHER Funding

Co-operative and Social Enterprise Fund for 2020/21

Glasgow City Council have launched the new fund for 20/21. They offer funding, advice and support to individuals, businesses and social enterprises on developing co-operative business models. They are keen to encourage the creation of new co-operatives and to grow existing ones.

In 2021-21 the CSEF will award grants of up to £5,000 towards eligible activity.

Cycling Facilities Fund

Grants from £20,000 up to £500,000 are available to constituted non-profit distributing organisations in Scotland for projects that improve cycling facilities across the country. The Fund has three main aims:

• Inspire the nation to cycle: Providing accessible, inclusive and inspiring facilities that enable and encourage people to engage with cycling in all its forms, regardless of their background, gender, age, ethnicity or ability.

• Grow and develop club and community cycling: Providing multi-discipline hub facilities with safe coaching and skill development areas that support the growth and development of cycling clubs and hubs.

• Grow and develop local and regional event opportunities: Providing new or upgrading existing facilities to enable local and regional festivals, competition and events.

Funding is awarded monthly until funds run out.

Pedal for Scotland Grants

Grants up to £10,000 to support local events in more places to get more people in Scotland cycling. Two levels of funding are available:

• Small grants of up to £1,000 for community cycling events with 50 – 250 participants

• Large grants of up to £10,000 for Pedal for Scotland events with 250 – 700 participants, delivered in partnership with Cycling Scotland

Deadline 8 March 2021

The Tree Council: Grant funding for tree planting

Funds are available to assist schools and community groups proposing to undertake well-planned tree, orchard and hedge planting projects this winter (November 2020 – March 2021). They will fund 100% of the cost (excluding VAT) of strong applications from £300 to an increased upper limit of £1500.To allow for a four week turnaround time from application to award, the deadline for applications is 5pm Friday 12 February 2021. Applicants must ensure that they can plan, execute and claim for their completed project by the end of March 2021.

Glasgow City Council’s Vacant and Derelict Land Fund

For financial year 2021/22 £2.315m is available. The objectives for this funding are to tackle long term vacant and derelict land, stimulate economic growth and job creation, develop a diverse sustainable environment and support communities to flourish and tackle inequalities. To be eligible for funding sites must have been on the Vacant and Derelict Land Register for more than 15 years. They are looking for a brief project outline, i.e. the site location; proposed works; estimated cost; indicative funding request by Monday 1st March 2021. for more info please contact or

Update on works taking place around the canal

Scottish Canals are continuing to make improvements to various sections of the Forth and Clyde Canal in North Glasgow in order to safeguard the canal for the future and continue to enhance the area.

Although not involved in the works, we wanted to ensure our Co-op members and the local community and businesses have all the up to date information they need about everything that’s taking place and what it means for them:

Stockingfield Junction

Scottish Canals are working on the development of the Stockingfield foot and cycle bridge, which will provide a new and important linkage between the communities of Ruchill, Gilshochill and Maryhill. The latest update on the works can be accessed here.

Scottish Canals are working on the development of the Stockingfield foot and cycle bridge, which will provide a new and important linkage between the communities of Ruchill, Gilshochill and Maryhill.

The new Stockingfield Bridge

As part of these improvements, sections of the Forth and Clyde and Glasgow Branch canal towpaths and the canal itself are closed until March 2021. The towpath between Maryhill, Lambhill and Ruchill is also closed until July 2022.

Works are taking place from 8.30am to 5.30pm on Monday through to Thursday each day and on Friday site works run from 8.30am until 2.30pm, with no work taking place on Saturday or Sunday.

Scottish Canals will be posting regular updates on these works on their website so head there for the very latest info.

North Canal Bank Street

Engineering works are taking place on North Canal Bank Street which means the road is closed both ways.

The roadworks are situated between A879 Craighall Road and Borron Street, by Pinkston Watersports Centre and a diversion is currently in place:

Credit: Physio Effect

Hamiltonhill Claypits Local Nature Reserve

The new Garscube Bridge and Panmure Gate link opened at the Claypits in October as part of a £6 million project on the creation of the local nature reserve in North Glasgow and it’s been great to see so many people enjoying the new walkways. 

The entire site is scheduled to open in Spring 2021 and other major works are still ongoing including:

  • The space around the new pond is having the surface of a necessary access area being overlaid with soiling and seeding to integrate it into the overall landscape
  • The pond has been planted with reeds in anticipation of the return of wildlife to the new wetland area
  • On the upper pathways, there is ongoing construction along the primary path at the glade area where they have placed a featured marker stone, highlighting a viewpoint to the west. This path will connect back to Ellesmere Street entranceway, construction of which is also ongoing. 
  • The planting schedule for the overall site has commenced but was unfortunately affected by the COVID restrictions and hence delayed. As a result, areas of the site will continue to need vegetation regrowth even at the time of the site reopening in spring. 
  • As part of the planting plan, they are currently working on substantial seeding and planting, including planning for 700 young trees and shrubs to be planted by members of the community
  • Garscube Link paths between Garscube Bridge and Garscube Road opposite Woodside Health Centre

The current restrictions and the impact of Covid on the construction programme is being closely monitored by Scottish Canals.

The contractor will be aiming to finish the path works and SUDS infrastructure within the Claypits during the winter period. 

Residential moorings have been developed at Panmure Wharf on the north side of Firhill Basin. These will become available in Spring 2021 and if you are interested in finding out more information please contact

The latest info on the Claypits can be found on the Scottish Canals website. 

Old Basin House, Applecross Wharf

Old Basin House sits in a prominent position on Applecross Street and is a Category C listed building, currently sitting on the Buildings at Risk Register following extensive fire damage in the late 1990s.

An initial phase of works took place in 2019 funded by Scottish Canals, Glasgow City Council, Scottish Government Regeneration Capital Grant Fund and Glasgow City Heritage Trust and in October 2020 further funding from Regeneration Capital Grant Funding enabled Scottish Canals to add an upper floor internally to the building.

Credit: Gathering Ground

The next phase of works will take place in Spring 2021 which will house food-based social enterprise and Glasgow Canal Co-op member, Gathering Ground.

Gathering Ground will work with Scottish Canals and others to create a growing space and outdoor learning area.

Funding is also being sought to give the building a coating of fresh lime render. 

Find the latest info on Old Basin House or visit the Gathering Ground website.

Sighthill Wharf

Glasgow City Council is overseeing work on a new pedestrian footbridge over the M8 from Sighthill. This will connect the new Keep Moat housing development – NorthBridge – and neighbouring communities with the city centre.

Scottish Canals are also undertaking work on a new towpath and significant landscaping which will link everything together. More information on the Sighthill Link can be found here.


Dundashill Landscaping – courtesy of Igloo / Rankin Fraser Architects

Dundashill Landscaping – courtesy of Igloo / Rankin Fraser Architects

Scottish Canals is progressing the sale of the first plot at Dundashill to West of Scotland Housing Association which will be delivered to Passive House standard. 

Unfortunately the site has been subject to some vandalism in recent months, with new landscape features and bollards targeted.  The first phase of housing is due to get underway in 2021. Scottish Canals and Igloo Regeneration are also progressing proposals for an urban sports space and meanwhile uses for the site working with Glasgow Canal Co-op.

New signage, vibrant panels and cycling trips planned for the canal as part of new project

Glasgow Canal Co-op is planning to create a new map, signs and add new vibrant panels and information markers along the stretch of the Forth and Clyde Canal in North Glasgow, as part of a new project to encourage more people to access and enjoy active travel.

The Co-op’s Getting North Glasgow Canal Active project will raise awareness about new and existing routes for travel along the waterway between Port Dundas and Firhill, enable people to access the routes through improved signage and information and support more people to walk and wheel along the canal.

A Glasgow Canal area map will give information on walking and cycling routes, access points and other local services, community centres, businesses, public toilets, sports venues and the Hamiltonhill Claypits Local Nature Reserve.

Attractive towpath

The new waymarkers and signs will help bring the culture and heritage of the canal to life and guide people around the area, including signposting key local attractions and points of interest.

Vibrant panels, hoarding and vinyl wraps will also be installed at various points between Port Dundas and Firhill to help make the towpath more attractive.

Get active together

The Co-op plan to team up with local cycling charity Free Wheel North to put on free rides, helping local people explore new routes and get active together.

Queen’s Cross Housing Association and teams at Possilpark, Springburn and Woodside Health Centres will also be involved to ensure as many people as possible can benefit from the project.

Getting North Glasgow Canal Active is funded by Smarter Choices, Smarter Places – Paths for All’s programme to increase active and sustainable travel throughout Scotland, grant-funded by Transport Scotland. Keepmoat Homes are also providing additional backing.

Rob Morrison, Co-Chair of the Glasgow Canal Co-op, said: “We’re working together to help North Glasgow’s stretch of the Forth and Clyde Canal become a valuable resource for local communities that provides a welcoming and accessible space for recreation and active travel. 

“This funding from the Smarter Choices, Smarter Places programme will allow us to make this stretch of the canal a more attractive option for those looking to get out and about and encourage people to use the towpath to get more active. 

“The new pedestrian bridge at the Claypits Local Nature Reserve has connected the communities of Maryhill and Hamiltonhill and opened up great options for walking and wheeling – this project allows us to capitalise on this and keep making improvements to the area.”

Norman Armstrong, Founder and Manager of Free Wheel North said: “2020 has been a defining year for health and active travel; Covid-19 has shone a light on the importance of biodiversity and climate change, and people have been exploring their local communities more than ever, mostly by walking and wheeling. 

“The Claypits Local Nature reserve is a place where people can restore their mental health and reconnect with the environment. Active travel is the key for building better after the crisis and Free Wheel North is happy to be part of a project that encourages people to get out on their bike and experience some urban wildlife.”

Graham McQueen, Senior Development Officer of the Smarter Choices, Smarter Places Open Fund said: “The Open Fund is all about supporting innovative and creative ideas that encourage more people to choose sustainable transport options including walking and cycling for everyday journeys.

“This project will raise awareness of this welcoming and accessible space and the many travel options that are available to local people.

“It’s great to know that this will not only give a great alternative to using the car for short trips, but that local people will also reap the health benefits of being more active.”

The Getting North Glasgow Canal Active project will get underway in February, with new signage and way markers expected to be in place by the summer.

Get involved in Gathering Ground’s community crockery project

Gathering Ground, a social enterprise which runs food-focused events to bring the community together, is looking for people to get involved in its community crockery project.

They are looking to design and create a 90-piece hand-thrown crockery set based on people’s ideas, memories and stories of the canal district, and want local people to take part.

Take part at home

Gathering Ground are looking for people to complete an at-home project pack, which includes:

  • 2 Canal Heritage Postcard Activity: Use this postcard to share what springs to mind when you think of the canal area. A sentence, a drawing or even a few lines of poetry. We will collect these collective ideas & transfer them onto the crockery set using decals. 
  • A Paint at Home Crockery Activity: Partnering with ‘The Craft Pottery’ to include their Paint at Home Pottery kits, each participant will receive a kit with all the tools to help design a piece of crockery
Memories and stories of the canal will be added to the hand-thrown crockery

With versions for adults and children, Gathering Ground hope they will be able to capture the diversity and heritage of the community who live, work and visit the canal area in the final designs.

The final crockery set will consist of plates, bowls, saucers, mugs and sharing platter and will be made by Kevin Callaghan, an award-winning sculptor based in Glasgow Sculpture Studios.

Local community

Through storytelling and sharing, the social enterprise aims to explore how people identify with the Canal District, transferring these discoveries into everlasting pieces of hand-thrown crockery to be shared with the local community.

The crockery set will be displayed at Gathering Ground in Old Basin House at Applecross Wharf and available to borrow by local community members. 

As the pieces are continuously used, it will bring memories of the past into the present and inspire what the meaning of community and heritage is for the future.


The project is funded by The National Lottery Heritage Fund and overseen by the Glasgow Canal Co-operative on behalf of Glasgow City Council.

The Gathering Ground were one of a selection of local groups and initiatives awarded a share of a £36,000 funding pot to helps the community explore and unlock the canal’s rich history and create exciting new activities across the area.

Cheerful Christmas festivities come to Possilpark

Possilpark Business Improvement District officially launched their Christmas campaign, #PossilparkLovesChristmas, with a host of festivities planned for the season.

Activity packs, a treasure hunt and memorial baubles are among the touching celebrations taking place as the local community and businesses come together.

Jackie Shearer of Possilpark BID said: “Possilpark has really come together this Christmas to lift the spirits in what’s been a very tough year and to bring joy to the area and celebrate the strength of community.”

A Christmas tree has been erected at the top of Saracen Street, bringing seasonal cheer to the area. It features hand-decorated memorial from St Matthew’s Centre.

The #PossilparkLovesChristmas celebrations have been made possible by help from the Canal Ward Area Partnership Fund, Glasgow City Council, NG Homes, Allied Vehicles Group and Foundation Scotland. Glasgow Canal Co-op also part-funded activity through the Heritage Project Fund.

Partners include Boom Community Arts, CHCP, Hawthorn Housing Co-operative, Link Up, NG Homes, Possilpark Community Council, Possilpark People’s Trust, Possobilities, St Matthew’s Centre, Thriving Places Ruchill Possilpark and Young People’s Future.

Canal heritage project awarded Coasts and Waters funding

Glasgow Canal Co-op has received funding from Historic Environment Scotland (HES) as part of Scotland’s Year of Coast and Waters for a project to research and promote the heritage of the canal area in north Glasgow.

Historic Environment Scotland announced funding of £194,349 to 18 community-based projects to protect, promote or engage with Scotland’s coastal or waterway heritage as part of its Coast and Waters Heritage Fund.

Glasgow Canal Co-op was awarded £13,416 for a project to increase the understanding of the canal’s heritage through community engagement activities. 

The Coasts and Waters Heritage Fund is a one-off competitive fund which launched in March to celebrate Scotland’s themed year. 

Historically significant

Christine Kuhn, Chair of the Glasgow Canal Co-op, said: “Glasgow’s canal was built by ordinary people and played a key role in building and shaping our city. Today, the canal and the surrounding area continues to be shaped by people who wish to see its heritage celebrated.

“This funding from Historic Environment Scotland will allow us to connect with local communities and people across Glasgow who would benefit most from learning about, exploring and enjoying the unique environment and social history of north Glasgow’s stretch of the Forth and Clyde Canal.

“We look forward to working closely with our members from Hamiltonhill Claypits Local Nature Reserve, Navvies’ Barge, Scottish Canals and others, to explore the cultural evolution of the canal and share this special and historically significant part of the city with others.”

Empower communities

Amy Eastwood, Head of Grants at HES, said: “We are pleased to support these 18 projects as part of our Coasts and Waters Heritage Fund. 

“From Dumfries and Galloway to the Highlands and Islands, these projects cover a wide geographical spread and showcase the fantastic work that goes on within communities across the country to harness, highlight and help to place a spotlight on Scotland’s diverse coastal heritage.” 

Alex Paterson, Chief Executive of HES, said: “The Coasts and Waters Heritage Fund was launched to empower communities to protect, promote and engage with Scotland’s coastal and waterway heritage as well as adapting to the effects of current challenges such as climate change. 

“I am confident that these projects will deliver significant benefits to local communities throughout Scotland and I look forward to seeing the progress unfold over the next few months.”