Canal history

Littleborough Church school annual trip. © The Waterways Trust Archive (Ellesmere Port) / The Waterways TrustLittleborough Church school annual trip. © The Waterways Trust Archive (Ellesmere Port) / The Waterways Trust

Canal history

Come and explore 200 years of rich history through our canal history section.

Learn how the Rochdale Canal was the first to cross the Pennines and how the huge volunteer effort from the 1970s to early 21st Century helped restore and reopen the canal.

Find out about its unique features and why it has earned the nickname of the Everest of canals and discover more about the lives of the people involved in designing, building and operating the canal.

The Rochdale Canal has a fascinating story to tell.