PLANNING permission has now been granted for the reconstruction of the Schoolhouse Bridge near Oswestry.

The Montgomery Waterway Restoration Trust successfully applied for planning to reopen the bridge, which sits in the last two miles of dry canal in Shropshire.

As part of the current restoration supported by the National Lottery Heritage Fund, the canal will be reopened to Crickheath Basin.

Michael Limbrey, chairman of the trust said: “A team from the local canal charities has been working together to promote the next stages of restoration.

“In the last three years our Restore the Montgomery Canal! appeal has raised most of the money we need to rebuild Schoolhouse Bridge though we are still keen to receive donations to complete the funding.

“We submitted our planning application in the summer with the help of the Canal and River Trust, which owns the canal, and permission has now been granted.

He added: “Now planning permission has been obtained, we are pressing ahead with the design details for final approval.

“There are a number of detailed conditions we now have to comply with and we then aim to start work next year.”

“This really will be one of the most exciting projects on the Montgomery Canal and indeed on any of the canal restorations around the country.”

Michael was keen for the work to begin on the site and said that more volunteers would be beneficial.

“Volunteer teams will clear the site, dig out the old road embankment and install the foundations and abutments for the bridge,” he added.

“Then we will bring in specialist contractors to install the arch before volunteers return to lay the base for the road which will be finished by more specialist contractors.

“We are building up our team for the project itself. Members of this team would be playing a valuable part in restoring this vital link on the canal.”

Anyone interested in volunteering can contact or visit