Schoolchildren will benefit from a new hub which has been created to help celebrate our canals and waterways.

The Batchworth Lock Education Centre was officially opened at the end of March and will be run by the Rickmansworth Waterways Trust - a heritage charity established in 1991 which aims to bring people, who are passionate about canals and the history, together.

Around 100 guests enjoyed the spring sunshine for the unveiling of the education centre in Rickmansworth, and the Lord Lieutenant of Hertfordshire, Robert Voss, was on hand to formally open the building.

The trust has been running education programmes for years and now there is a modern hub for children to learn from.

David Montague, Rickmansworth Waterways Trust chairman said: “We would like to thank everyone who so generously donated money, time and considerable energy in so many different ways to this project. We are profoundly thankful to everyone who has supported the new building. Thanks to the help from Affinity Water, charitable trusts, Three Rivers District Council, schools, individuals and the business community, we got this project completed in just over two years.

“Affinity Water sponsored some of the fit out of the building so that the trust can host school visits and provide disability access. Our award-winning education programme will be now delivered here and help children enjoy the lock and increase their knowledge and appreciation of the canals and waterways.”

Anna Jarmolinska-Nowak, corporate social responsibility manager at Affinity Water, added: “We were so happy to be able to continue our support for the education programme and the development of this stunning new premises. Water may be our business, but we want to do our bit for others in the communities we serve and work with people to protect the environment and ensure a sustainable future for all.”