Navvies’ Barge joins Glasgow Canal Co-op

Navvies’ Barge – a social enterprise canal boat moored at Applecross Basin – is the latest organisation to join the Glasgow Canal Co-op.

Linking up with the collective of organisations based in and around Glasgow’s Forth & Clyde Canal, Navvies’ Barge is now one of 23 members aiming to unlock the canal’s potential to create a vibrant area in the north of the city for people to live, work and visit.

Accessible waterway

The barge runs boat trips along Glasgow’s stretch of the canal and hosts a café and a variety of workshops, making the waterway more accessible to people in the local community.

Having lived on the canal for many years, owner Sean McNamara, along with co-owners Ania Neisser and Thomas Kelly, wanted to share the untold benefits of a relaxing day out on the cut with others.

Customers can enjoy a day out on the barge, make themselves at home on-board with a buffet and relax their way along the canal.

The barge is also shared with community groups in order to open up the canal and the benefits of time on the water with as many people as possible.

Catalyst for regeneration

Sean said: “We believe the canal should be a catalyst for regeneration that enriches an area and serves the people in it, and we’re happy to get on board with something that can be a force for good.

Navvies’ Barge on Glasgow’s Canal at Applecross Basin

“We’re looking forward to co-operating with local people and businesses to celebrate the canal’s potential to connect people with place and each other, and importantly, highlight the role that boats play in the beauty, heritage and future of the cut.”

Christine Kuhn, Glasgow Canal Co-op chair, said: “It’s fantastic to welcome Navvies’ Barge to our thriving community of organisations who represent the community spirit and breadth of creativity, talent and vibrant activity along Glasgow’s canal.

“All of our Co-op members are connected by fascinating heritage and the canal’s unique environment. As an organisation which is working to bring the heritage of our special waterway to life in new ways, Navvies’ Barge is a welcome addition to the group.”

Established as a workers’ co-operative, Navvies’ Barge pays tribute to the workers who made the canal – the navvies. The social enterprise aims to empower people in their work and remind them of the power of worker solidarity.

Find out more about Navvies’ Barge.

Canal Heritage Project Fund

Deadline for applications 11am 28th February

Posted on 30th January 202020th February 2020 by Anna Young

The Glasgow Canal Co-operative is pleased to invite proposals for funding from the local community in the North Glasgow Canal area that explore and unlock local heritage. 

This 2020 grant is being administered by the Glasgow Canal Co-operative, on behalf of Glasgow City Council, from the National Lottery Heritage Fund.  The funding aims to support and empower the local community to undertake heritage activities. 

Under this programme you can apply for a minimum of £1,500 to a maximum of £7,000.  

This scheme has been designed to encourage:

  • the local community, organisations and groups to develop their own initiatives in response to the recently produced Glasgow Canal Heritage and Arts Strategy and its themes; 
  • a variety of innovative projects;
  • ideas to be delivered by community organisations and groups to explore local heritage;
  • empowering local people to research and develop activities that they feel ownership of;
  • to use heritage to connect with, and welcome, existing residents, new residents moving into the area and to attract visitors; an
  • a positive impact on the area, to enhance and promote the Canal and its use by local communities.

The deadline for applications is 11am, Friday 28th February 2020.

Please click the links to four documents which provide more detail on the funding and:

Canal Heritage Project Guidance document

Canal Heritage Project Application Form

Summarised Canal Heritage & Arts Strategy – a summary version of a recently produced strategy which explores the Glasgow Canal area.

Cultural Heritage and Art Strategy – a detailed version of the same strategy which will provide inspiration and suggestions for this funding.

If you are interested in applying please contact Anna Young, Project Manager for the Glasgow Canal Co-operative in the first instance at:

Glasgow Canal Festival set to make a splash in 2020

Glasgow Canal Festival is set to make a splash next year, having been named as part of the celebrations for Scotland’s Year of Coasts and Waters 2020.

Glasgow’s Canal, in the north of the city, will be bursting with activity in a celebration of the unique and iconic waterway and its vibrant surrounding community, for the fourth annual festival on Saturday, 25 July 2020.


As part of Scotland’s Year of Coasts and Waters, the 2020 festival will feature a captivating Canal Float.

Produced by Carnival Arts, visitors will be able to enjoy a wonderful floating display as it travels down the Forth and Clyde Canal in North Glasgow – with more details on the spectacle to be announced next year.

Hosted by Glasgow Canal Co-op, Glasgow Canal Festival is nestled on the balcony to the city between Speirs Wharf and Firhill Basin, just ten minutes from the city centre.

Something special

Sally Hobson, Festival Director for the Glasgow Canal Festival, said: “The banks of Glasgow’s stretch of canal will come to life once again this summer with a programme of live music, artistic performances and workshops, sporting activities and chances to explore and celebrate the area’s heritage and unique environment.

“Thanks to funding from the Years of Coasts and Waters, we’re excited to work with Carnival Arts to bring something really special to the waterway so put the date in your diary and join us next year for this wonderful event in the heart of Glasgow.”

Promoting Scotland

The festival is one of several events and initiatives to share in £770,000 of Scottish Government funding as part of a year-long programme of activities which will shine a spotlight on the vital coasts and waters of Scotland’s landscape.

Fiona Hyslop MSP, Cabinet Secretary for Culture, Tourism and External Affairs, said: “We have an exciting year ahead celebrating Scotland’s wonderfully diverse coasts, canals, rivers and lochs.

“Scotland’s Themed Years have been running since 2009 and we know they are a proven mechanism for us all to work together to create opportunities to diversify our tourism offer whilst promoting Scotland as a great place to visit for people from around the world.

“Whether it’s a canal boat holiday, a week sailing round the Western Isles, an afternoon kayaking or walking by our rivers, lochs or on the beaches, I would encourage everyone to take advantage of the opportunities offered by Scotland’s beautiful coasts and waters.”

Dive in

Malcolm Roughead, Chief Executive of VisitScotland said: “We are inviting the world to dive into the amazing experiences our coasts and waters provide. Scotland’s enviable reputation for unspoiled beaches, vibrant natural and cultural heritage and thrill-seeking adventure activities will be celebrated through a packed year-long programme of events and activities”

Glasgow Canal Festival will take place on Saturday, 25 July. Keep up to date via the Glasgow Canal Festival website.