It was one Sunday in November 2009 that I posted my petition on the Number 10 website. I was driven to action by a report on BBC’s Politics Show programme highlighting plans being considered by the government to sell off the property portfolio of British Waterways, the agency tasked with the restoration and maintenance of the nation’s canals and waterways.
As British Waterways rely on the income generated from rents to undertake a considerable amount of its work I was concerned that stretches of our canals and waterways, enjoyed by many, would no longer be maintained should it be forced to dispose of its property portfolio.
After a staggering 22,309 signatures (it was in the top five most popular petitions on the website at one stage) and a change of government the future of our waterways looks more certain. In its official response the government has confirmed plans to create a new charity, similar to the National Trust, and transfer the property portfolio to it.
Whilst I disagree with many policies being developed by the current government I must applaud them on this decison and look forward to hearing more about their plans in the next few weeks.