Call: +44 (0)131 625 7040

England's Waterways.

With a network of canals running through the heart of the region, England’s waterways present unique routes through city and countryside, inviting both domestic and international visitors to explore and experience England by, and on our rivers and canals following these intuitive courses.

Birmingham Airport provides a primary gateway for international visitors from identified target markets, Germany and the Netherlands, with direct flights from 12 cities across these markets.

We are looking to attract repeat visitors, 45-65 years of age who are interested in easy outdoor adventure and are looking for a new way to experience England.

This project aims to maximise the underutilised national assets within the West Midlands region, focusing on the waterways as a key feature for the attraction and dispersal of visitors.

We want to work with ambitious businesses who want to take a proactive approach to developing their products and experiences for international markets. There is an opportunity to be featured in product brochures being distributed at travel shows, hero itineraries and in-market media activity

The core aims of the England’s Waterways project are:

  • Product development - to increase bookable, commissionable product along the intuitive routes created by the waterways, creating unique, memorable English holidays which encourage repeat visits;
  • Market development - to increase the knowledge of, and propensity to visit to ‘England’s Heartland’ through the travel trade supply chain; and
  • Economic impact by using the waterways as the hook to increase the volume and value of visits across the seasons and upscaling the project across the English waterways.

Using a three-model approach, the project aims to grow shoulder and low season visits to the region:

  • Narrow boating holidays – Visitors can take their very own behind-the-scenes tour of England using the waterways different canal routes and rings. Whilst passing through wonderful countryside and into the heart of some of our best loved towns and cities, visitors can stop to enjoy traditional pubs, country walks, as well as iconic attractions.
  • Walking holidays – Visitors can explore the heart of England using walking trails alongside the region’s waterways. Whilst walking and enjoying our stunning countryside, visitors can personalise their own itineraries with additional activities such as cycling, canal trips and visiting historic attractions.
  • Waterside cultural breaks – Short-breaks where visitors can enjoy a waterside experience whilst indulging in rich culture and fantastic cuisine offered by the regions urban destinations.

For more information on the project go to the Project Information web page or please contact: 

Stewart Walker: 0131625 7040 or complete our contact form

Map of Rings

The programme is supported and funded by Discover England and is available to tourism businesses across the Midlands region located within 1 mile of the waterways. 


Programme Partners:

Canal and River Trust; Cannock Chase Council; Coventry City Council; Drifters; Dudley Metropolitan Borough Council; North Warwickshire Borough Council; Nuneaton & Bedworth Borough Council; Rugby Borough Council; Shakespeare's England; Solihull Metropolitan Borough Council; Telford & Wrekin Council; Walsall Borough Council; Warwickshire County Council; Worcester City Council.






You can't just ask customers what they want and then try to give that to them. By the time you get it built, they'll want something new.

Steve Jobs, Founder Apple