Canal Clean-up success & it’s just the beginning!



A canal clean-up took place this week as De Montfort volunteers got involved in an ongoing project to tidy Leicester’s waterways.

The programme, run by the Canal and River Trust along with DMU Square Mile, aims to make some of Leicester’s places more attractive for people and wildlife alike.

Tom Freeland, 41, the Volunteer Co-ordinator for the Canal and River Trust, said: “This is an opportunity to get involved in taking an area that gets a bit of punishment, that suffers from people dumping rubbish or vandalism and making it somewhere people care about.”

The session on Thursday is the first of many that will take place each week until November 25 and involves activities such as planting flowers, clearing entrances and litter picking off and on the water.

Mr Freeland added:  “This is an ongoing job, you have to keep at it, but it does make a difference to have that regular work and interest.

“We saw this as a really good opportunity to work with Square Mile to gain different sorts of volunteers.

“This will be the fourth group of students from DMU we have had down and we have already done some nice stuff.”

Along with the satisfaction of helping their community, volunteers also receive professional training, a Higher Education Achievement Report and a Square Mile certificate.

Chandini Patel, 21, a first year Education Studies student, said:  “I like volunteering and helping the community so I thought getting involved with Square Mile would allow me to give back to those who need help and support.”

The project has so far attracted the attention of many international undergraduates like Education Studies student Quinn Franklin, 18, who called the canal a ‘vital aspect’ of Leicester and said he wanted to help improve an area he walks every day before returning home to America.

Chenxi Hu, 20, a third year Business and Finance student, said “It is a very good experience to do different types of volunteer work.

“This is a new project for me and a way to do a service for the people of Leicester and I hope in the future I can do more Square Mile volunteer work.”

For more information or to get involved visit

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