London Canal Museum Press Releases

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Press releases in reverse chronological order

This page offers the text of our press releases. You can also keep up with what we've been doing at the museum by looking at the news page on this website and by following the museum on Twitter and by liking us on Facebook.

Scheduled Weekday Boat Trips for 2018

27th January 2018

The London Canal Museum in King's Cross has announced at Excursions 2018 the introduction of new scheduled boat trips on selected Thursdays during the summer season, aimed primarily at group organisers.

On the second and fourth Thursdays of May to September inclusive, there will be scheduled boats at 1130, 1230, 1400 and 1500 that will cruise through the long Islington canal tunnel and back in about 50 minutes. A guide from the museum will normally travel on the boat to give a historical commentary to the passengers.

These popular cruises will continue to operate on the second and fourth Sundays of May to October, as they have for some years. The museum has never before offered weekday scheduled trips.

Pricing is extremely competitive at £7 per head including museum entry for groups of at least 10 people, so there is no further reduction for concessions.

The boat can only carry 12 people at a time, so groups of more than 12 are split between two or more trips. Whilst one part of the group is afloat, the other part enjoys the indoor exhibitions of the museum.

Individuals will be able to book on these trips as well, so groups are encouraged to book well ahead. As places are limited, payment for boat trips has to be made at the time of booking and online booking wil be available from February.

The museum also offers tea/coffee and biscuits for groups and guided canal towpath walks. The groups service may be contacted at and further details are available at

London's Lost Canals Rediscovered in New Exhibition

26th September 2017

Beneath the streets and new developments of London lie nine canals and navigations, constructed from the 1680s to the 1840s, that have failed to make it into the 21st Century.

A team from London Canal Museum have researched their rise and disappearance, searching out little known paintings, sketches and old photographs held by libraries, museums and galleries across the City.

The result is a unique exhibition that reveals for the first time their forgotten stories and traces the reasons for their decline - lack of cargoes, competition from the railways and pure neglect contributed to their loss. With them went the opportunity of increasing London's waterways for leisure in the 21st century.

Although most leave little trace today, the stories remain and have resonance today:

Exhibition entrance is included in the museum entry fee (£5.00 for adults) and runs until Spring 2018

Note for editors:For more information, please contact John Stredwick, Exhibition curator, at 01707 880967 or e-mail

HRH The Princess Royal celebrates 25 years of the London Canal Museum

The London Canal Museum is celebrating its opening 25 years ago by launching its largest ever development programme. Major new exhibitions on 'Boats and Cargoes' and 'London’s Living Waterways' have been opened today by HRH Princess Anne, which also includes a major facilities upgrade.

The London Canal Museum is celebrating its opening 25 years ago by launching its largest ever development programme. Major new exhibitions on 'Boats and Cargoes' and 'London’s Living Waterways' have been opened today by HRH Princess Anne, which also includes a major facilities upgrade.

The museum was first opened on the 9th March 1992 by HRH The Princess Royal as Patron of the museum. Martin Sach, Chair of the Canal Museum Trust said “We are delighted that HRH Princess Anne has continued her interest and support of the museum with her eighth visit over a quarter of a century and seen how the museum has developed strongly since its early days. We are also grateful to the original Trustees who purchased our Victorian ice warehouse building which has given us such a wonderful place to use as a museum, and opportunity to tell the story of the Ice Trade.”

The Boats and Cargoes exhibition is the result of painstaking research into the craft and cargoes that operated on London’s canals and the River Thames from earliest times. “We think visitors will be surprised to see the huge range of boats that have plied their trade” says Celia Halsey, Project Manager. “The museum commissioned seven new model boats including the famous steam tug that operated through the Islington Tunnel and was called ‘the ugliest boat on England’s canals’”. The exhibition also shows visitors the cargoes that were carried. “Visitors may expect coal and grain to have been carried, but perhaps don’t know about esparto grass, arsenic and the aptly named ‘nightsoil’”, says Celia.

The museum has also been investing in its facilities to ensure that visitors – both to the museum and to its thriving use for functions are well catered for. The toilets have been fully refurbished and the number increased, and have a unique canal themed artwork on the wall. Trish Parrott, a well-known canal artist and one of the museum’s longstanding volunteers has produced an original ‘roses and castles’ painting that has been scanned and printed onto tiles. The museum has also installed air conditioning throughout.

Finally, there are new additions to the London’s Living Waterways exhibition where the museum’s team of researchers explore the human interest stories of the waterways which still shape and influence the capital today. The new exhibition and facilities opened on Friday March 10th.

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New Exhibition Celebrates 200 years of The Regent's Canal

Issued 13th August 2016

The London Canal Museum has launched a new exhibition: Turning 200 - Celebrating the Birth of The Regent's Canal. Two hundred years ago this month, the first section of The Regent's Canal opened from Paddington to Camden Town. This included a celebration on the Cumberland Arm which was a half mile branch of The Regent's Canal which led to a canal basin near Euston Station.

"Our researchers have been uncovering the fascinating history of the lost Cumberland Arm for our new exhibition which we are launching on the 200th anniversary of the Regent's Canal" says Martin Sach, Chair of the Trust for the London Canal Museum. "The exhibition tells some enthralling stories of lost industries; the rise and fall of the canal arm and its renewal as part of today's London".

The Cumberland Arm and Basin were just a stone's throw from the new West End of London - both planned by John Nash. Although planned to supply the surrounding aristocratic neighbourhood, the Cumberland Arm never fulfilled its potential. The Arm was not used by the railways when they arrived at nearby Euston, where this new transport technology was announced by the triumphal Euston Arch.

Charlie Forman, Project Manager for the Exhibition says "We've been engrossed in the life cycle of this canal. The Prince Regent gave his name - but not his money - to the venture. While the company struggled to raise the cash, he spent a quarter of the sum they needed on the tableware for his accession banquet. Then as the canal's fortunes declined and the neighbourhood became poorer, social reformers and artists arrived."

"Our exhibition highlights some amazing facts including how the basin was filled in with rubble from the blitz, and how a club for local working class girls became the epicentre of the revival in English folk dancing. Remarkably the land created was turned over to allotments which thrive to this day - probably the most central plots in London. Perhaps their continuing success is down to the legend that the topsoil came from Windsor Castle". The exhibition is open during museum opening hours and will also allow visitors to see how to trace the route of the lost Cumberland Arm today.