DUDLEY Canal Trust has a new crew member to boost community links as work begins on a £3m renovation.

The trust is set to begin construction of their new Portal visitor’s centre and Sarah Fellows has been recruited to develop activities for tourists, schools, families and other groups which make the most of the attraction.

The 28-year-old heritage activities officer will also be working with Dudley-based organisations to develop new partnerships with the trust.

She said: “My head’s brimming with all sorts of ideas that will hopefully bring in new faces and encourage a diverse range of visitors to make this a regular haunt.

“The new indoor space will create a far more versatile venue that will enable us to revamp the existing schools programme, provide linked projects with the likes of the Dudley Museum and Archives, and even offer a really interesting meeting and workspace for local businesses.”

Construction work at the Portal, new the Black Country Living Museum, is expected to be completed in Spring 2015.