A MAJOR initiative to restore or replace mileposts along the route of the Leeds and Liverpool Canal has received a boost.

Posts through the Keighley and South Craven district are receiving attention as part of the venture, staged by the Canal & River Trust.

Now, the Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE) has given its support with a £200 donation.

The trust's EveryMileCounts project, launched to coincide with the canal's 200th anniversary and supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund, has had a huge response.

But more volunteer groups and individuals are needed to help with restoring the markers, and sponsors are also sought.

"We are very grateful to the Campaign to Protect Rural England for its generous donation," said Alice Kay, the trust's project officer.

"We've had a great response to our appeal and are very excited to work with groups and communities, which want to be involved with refurbishing or replacing the mile markers, plus the half and quarter-mile markers that need repainting. That's more than 500 posts that require restoration.

"This is a massive challenge, so we are still very keen to hear from volunteer groups or sponsors who would like to make donations."

Ron Healey, from the CPRE, said the organisation is delighted to support the scheme.

"The canal is a valuable amenity and a distinctive habitat for a variety of wildlife," he added.

"We hope that making this contribution will inspire our members and supporters to become involved with initiatives or activities related to the bicentenary."

Anyone interested in getting involved in EveryMileCounts should e-mail alice.kay@canalrivertrust.org.uk for more details.