Lichfield and Hatherton Canals Trust says a third of £1million tunnel fundraising target has been reached

A campaign to raise £1million to build a canal tunnel under the cross city railway line in Lichfield has reached almost a third of its target.

An artist's impression of the new canal tunnel

An artist’s impression of the new canal tunnel

The David Suchet Tunnel Vision appeal was launched in January and it was revealed at the Lichfield and Hatherton Canals Restoration Trust that more than £320,000 has already been raised.

The AGM also saw the appointment of Christine Bull as the new chair after David Dixon stepped down.

Since its formation in 1988 the trust has overcome a number of obstacles as it bids to restore the Lichfield Canal from Ogley Junction to Huddlesford, and the Hatherton Canal from Calf Heath to Wyrley Grove, including the construction of an aqueduct over the M6 Toll Road and a £490,000 culvert under the carriageway of the Lichfield Southern Bypass.

A spokesperson said: “Now plans to extend the bypass are well advanced and these will include a new railway bridge which is to be installed during a brief possession of the cross city line, probably in late 2019.

“The trust intends to take this opportunity to drive a canal tunnel under the railway line near the new bridge, and is working very closely with Staffordshire County Council to ensure the maximum cost benefit for both schemes, but to do that it must raise £1million by Spring 2019.”

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