THE Lancaster Canal Trust (LCT) is laying almost 24,000 concrete blocks to hold down a waterproof liner on a restored section of canal, to extend the Stainton to Crooklands section, owned by the Canal & River Trust (C&RT).

At the Lune Aqueduct in Lancaster, the C&RT is holding down a liner with stone, which minimises risks to wildlife. Canal builders used clay.

I asked the LCT if there has been any ecological study on how concrete blocks will affect wildlife. I received no answer.

I contacted the C&RT last June asking were they happy with blocks. I was told they would look into it and reply. Despite reminders, I received no reply.

I asked advice from Sir David Attenborough, who says it should be resolved locally.

The Environment Agency (EA) told me the canal is not a main river, so they would not be consulted or comment on these works.

The EA said they advise against the use of concrete in rivers where possible to allow for natural bed materials; the canal is a manmade system and therefore slightly different. They said large amounts of concrete blocks could potentially change the water chemistry and they would expect this to be within a limited area of the blocks.

I contacted the Inland Waterways Association and several other organisations or groups: no reply.

Meanwhile, more than 50 per cent of bumblebees and pollinators have gone, and wild birds and butterflies are in decline. Dormice, which have been around for 30 million years, and other small animals, are in decline.

Micro organisms in the Lancaster Canal are in decline and 50 per cent of swans have gone from a 15-mile stretch of the Lancaster Canal in the last three years.

This lack of interest by leading bodies causes great concern and we must all learn to live with nature and stop giving it problems.

Frank Sanderson