Easter Saturday, 26th March 2005, saw the long-awaited re-opening of Bugsworth Basin, the head of navigation of the Peak Forest Canal!
Bugsworth Basin closed in 1927 and by the 1960s was dry and overgrown. In 1968 volunteers from the Inland Waterways Protection Society began the long work of restoration. The basin re-opened in 1999 but had to be closed again after a few months later due to major leaks. The Inland Waterways Protection Society has worked in partnership with the Countryside Agency, East Midlands Development Agency, Derbyshire County Council, European Regional Development Funding and British Waterways. Funding for the £1.2 million pound restoration was granted from English Heritage.
The opening date nearly had to be postponed again when a new seepage of water occurred in the entrance canal earlier in 2005. Wash wall repairs and canal re-lining were only completed days before the Easter weekend!
The MP for High Peak, Tom Levitt, opened the basin by cutting the tape from the bow of a boat, accompanied by the Vice Chair of British Waterways, Dr Campbell Christie, the Mayor of High Peak, Councillor Ann Mone, Ian Edgar, Chairman of the Inland Waterways Protection Society, and many guests.
A boat rally was held over the Easter weekend to mark the re-opening and 94 boats were moored in the basins!