CAMPAIGNING charity The Inland Waterways Association is asking for people to help uncover hidden features on their stretch.

Along the canals and rivers are many small manmade features that were installed when the waterways, including the Grand Union Canal, were first built.

Larger structures such as bridges, locks, aqueducts and tunnels are quite obvious and some are protected either by being Listed or as part of a conservation area.

However, smaller features can sometimes be missed and the IWA feels they are no less important.  

It’s looking for things like rope marks on a bridge, mason’s marks on a lock wall, canal company signage or mile posts along the towpath.

Alison Smedley, campaigns and public affairs manager, says: “We want to make sure the quirky features are retained, ideally in working order.” 

See if you can spot a forgotten historic feature from the days of the working boats, or something that dates from when the canal was first built.

Take a photo on your phone and send it to

IWA’s experts will try to identify it and upload it into the IWA Hidden Heritage Gallery, which can be found on the website .

If you could take a close-up of the feature and also one of the overall setting, that will help.