Cheshire’s salt industry and its vital links to the region’s waterways will be celebrated this week when the Salt Towns’ Rally comes to Northwich on Thursday 23rd August.
The second leg of the event, which has already visited Middlewich and will go to Winsford, has been funded by the Northwich Business Improvement District (BID) and Barons Quay, with the town keen to honour its industrial heritage.
The Hive and The River Weaver Navigation Society have teamed up to organise the event which is the first ever UK waterways boat rally to take in three events across three different towns.
The cavalcade of canal boats started gathering in Middlewich between Friday 17th and Sunday 19th August.
After their stop-off in Northwich the boats will then head to Winsford over the Bank Holiday weekend for the Offcut Festival.
To celebrate the arrival of the boats in Northwich for the event, there will be an action-packed schedule of activities from 12-7pm.
Artists will perform throughout the day on a purpose-built stage, while kids will be entertained with a circus skills workshop, face painting and a magic show.
The family event is free for all, and one of the event’s organisers, Damon Horrill, has spoken about why it has been organised and the importance of commemorating local history and heritage.
He said: “The idea of the three towns working together on projects such as this have been long discussed given the shared salt mining heritage and waterways linking Middlewich, Winsford, Northwich. Together the towns are known as The Weaver Valley.”
Damon added: “The Salt Towns’ Rally sets out to highlight the fantastic waterways that link the three towns whilst campaigning for a boat lift in Winsford to raise boats from the end of the Weaver to the Middlewich branch of the Shropshire Union Canal so as to create The Weaver Valley Ring of Water, which will become the most popular stretch of water in the country for leisure boaters and tourists.”
Northwich BID Manager Jane Hough urged people to take part in the historic event.
She said: “Northwich would not be the town it is today if it wasn’t for the salt industry and great links to the waterways, so it is important to commemorate the town’s history and heritage and what better way than this Salt Towns’ Rally.”