From the opening of the River Weaver Navigation in the 18th century it has had a significant impact on the economic flourishing of the surrounding areas. The growth of industries and trade along the river created job opportunities for the local population, and could do again.

Prior to the navigation’s development, transportation of goods in the region was slow and costly. With the improved navigability of the River Weaver, businesses in Cheshire gained an efficient and cost-effective means of transporting their products to wider markets.

The navigation allowed Cheshire businesses to access larger markets and engage in trade with other parts of England and beyond. This led to increased trade opportunities, benefiting industries such as salt production, agriculture, and manufacturing. The transportation of goods via the river also attracted new industries and investment to the area.

The River Weaver Navigation included the construction of docks, locks and wharves, providing essential facilities for loading and unloading goods. These became hubs of economic activity, further facilitating trade and commerce in Cheshire.

Davenports Tea Cruise

Now the Navigation offers new opportunities for business and commerce. Tourism, recreation, heritage, events and more can be easily hosted alongside and on the river. From purely water focused businesses to riverfront events and shopping, the River Weaver Navigation holds opportunities for those wanting to work in and around the water. 

There is a beautifully produced “Chester Waterways Strategy” dating to 2012, but rather more aspiration than action. Lack of funding is inevitably a key issue: Chester-Waterways-Strategy

The RWNS continue to work with the Council and other partners on waterways strategy, to promote the opportunities we have and press for action, in the hope that towns along the river will one day fully benefit from the Weaver Navigation.