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.