On Sunday 20th October the Kidsgrove Town Team consisting of Councillors, Businesses and Newcastle Borough Council officers visited Marple outside Stockport. Marple is renowned for its Canal that runs in close proximity to the town centre.
Councillor Sue Ingham of Stockport Metropolitan Borough Council joined the Kidsgrove Town Team and gave a tour of Marple. Sue talked about how she believes the canal can play a big role in the future of her Town and what challenges there have been in recent years. Joining with the Civic Society and local organisations Sue explained how the project had been driven by volunteers, businesses and most importantly local people.
There is a real movement for change in Marple and it is believed Kidsgrove could do something similar to boost trade in Kidsgrove Town Centre and to make our town more attractive to visitors. It’s not going too far to suggest we could really benefit from tourism. Kidsgrove as a town underestimates itself and the question is why? We have the Harecastle Tunnel! It is made up of two separate, parallel, tunnels described as Brindley (2,880 yards) and the later Telford (2,926 yards) after the engineers that constructed them. Today only the Telford tunnel is navigable. The tunnel is only wide enough to carry traffic in one direction at a time and boats are sent through in groups, alternating northbound and southbound. This is a great feat of engineering that should be recognised more but Kidsgrove needs to play a part in the promotion of this famous structure.
Board member of the Kidsgrove CIC and Chair of Environment and Infrastructure, Elliot Ashton said: “The Kidsgrove Town Team was made to feel very welcome in Marple. Whilst Marple is different in size to Kidsgrove it is very similar in its obstacles it is trying to overcome. It was useful to quiz the two key figures on how they engaged with the public and different organisations, as this is the stage we are at in Kidsgrove.”