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Category Archives: Habitat improvement

River Mease Restoration works to be delivered this summer

Major capital works taking place to enhance important river habitats

Trent Rivers Trust (TRT), in collaboration with partners of the River Mease Catchment Restoration Project, has been spending the lockdown preparing for a summer season of scheme delivery on the River Mease Special Area of Conservation and Site of Special Scientific Interest.

Eight schemes are due to be delivered across the catchment, from river restoration schemes on the River Mease itself to sediment trapping schemes at the headwaters of tributaries. The delivery is the culmination of a year’s worth of preparation, marking the end of the first year of this three-year project. Works will take place around Measham and Chilcote in North West Leicestershire, Netherseal and Overseal in South Derbyshire and Edingale and Croxall in the Lichfield district.

The project is co-funded by the Environment Agency and the local authority Developer Contribution Scheme to improve the water quality, habitat and biodiversity of the River Mease, which is one of the most highly designated rivers in the country, as a Special Area of Conservation (SAC) and Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI).

The works will result in 9km of watercourse being restored to more natural conditions, creating better habitat for the designated species; 8km of which is on the main River Mease itself. In addition, the works will also create 7.4ha of terrestrial habitat improvements, including enhancement of the riparian zone, tree planting and wetland creation.

More details about 6 of the schemes can be found in the site notices which are required as part of the consultation to work under the Environment Agency’s permitted development rights. If you have any comments on the proposals you may submit these to the address on the notices before 19th September 2020.

Here is a map of where each of the site notices are located River Restoration Autumn 2020 NEAS

You can read the site notices here… MEA023 Croxall; MEA021 Edingale; MEA009 Chilcote Brook; MEA007-8 Money Hill to Yew Tree; MEA007 Money Hill Farm; MEA002 Birds Hill Measham

Please follow the progress of the project on our twitter page @MeaseRiver

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If you go down to the Brook today…

You’ll be in for a furry surprise, especially at Hilcote setback outfall on Normanton Brook in South Bolsover District, Derbyshire.  A local wildlife photographer Ian Wilson has told us that he has spotted 5, yes 5 Water Voles around the outfall.

Hilcote setback outfall is a project we successfully delivered in Spring 2019. The outfall brings rainwater off the nearby industrial estate directly to Normanton Brook.  Meaning any pollutants in the rainwater, say from a road spillage would find their way directly into the Brook.

Our project removed 25 metres of concrete outfall to create space to build a backwater and a swale. These intercept possible pollution, allowing it to breakdown before reaching the brook, improving the habitat for wildlife, particularly the water voles that live in the Brook.

Water voles (commonly known as the Water Rat – remember Ratty from Wind in the Willows?  He was a Water Vole) are the largest species of vole in Britain.  Water voles have undergone one of the most serious declines of any wild mammal in Britain during the 20th century. Loss and degradation of habitat, are major causes of decline as is the introduction of the American Mink .  It is thought that between 1989 and 1998, the population fell by almost 90 per cent!

So back to the Hilcote Five – how fantastic that our project has delivered an improved habitat, now where did I put that copy of Wind in the Willows?

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