Kirkintilloch canal regeneration can inspire other projects

Jo Swinson and Donald MacKinnon

Jo has been a strong supporter of canal regeneration

Jo Swinson has called for the regeneration of the Forth and Clyde canal in Kirkintilloch to inspire other canal redevelopments around the country.

Speaking in a debate on ‘Future Funding of Canals’ in Parliament today, Jo paid tribute to the work of Kirkintilloch’s Initiative, which is behind the new marina being created as part of the new business and leisure development in the Southbank area of the town. She said:

“My constituency covers Kirkintilloch, which is the canal capital of Scotland and has been used as a redevelopment mechanism to stimulate regeneration in the economy; indeed, we have a new marina and an arts and culture centre. That has knock-on benefits for everybody in the community. It is an investment from which to reap benefits in future.”

Commenting further after the debate, Jo said:

“Not only are canals important for recreational and environmental reasons, but I believe the transportation of freight on canals should still be encouraged today. Our canal network should never be subject to the kind of neglect that took place in years gone by.

“The Forth and Clyde canal has long been central to life in Kirkintilloch and the marina development underway at Southbank will give it a new lease of life once again. The near-unique partnership behind Kirkintilloch’s Initiative has shown the way forward in bringing about sensitive, sustainable regeneration.

“The redevelopment of the canal will have knock-on benefits for the surrounding area in Scotland’s ‘canal capital’. The Kirkintilloch model is one that others taking on canal regeneration projects would do well to imitate.”

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