Following on from the article by Sarah Perry of the Herts & Middx Wildlife Trust in last months Journal on the parlous state of our local river, a number of concerned residents joined Sarah, and our local mayor, Graham Waite on Wednesday 15th May and carried out a survey of the river. This was done by walking it’s length through the town from Wyddial Bridge in the north to the council recycling centre in the South, making observations, taking notes and photographs.
It became clear that up until the entry of the sewage outlet just above the recycling centre, that the flow on our local chalk stream, one of only ~200 in the world was nil-minimal and that the river was over shaded in many places preventing growth of natural chalk stream plants.
The group made several suggestions as to how this could be rectified and we agreed that these would be collated into an action plan, which would include discussions with Thames Water (operator of the Sewage plant) and Affinity Water (supplier of water to the local area). Sarah also informed of a number of other concerned groups, both for the Rib and other Hertfordshire rivers with a view to sharing views and co-ordinating actions.
All in all a very useful session, not the least of which being in the May sunshine, how beautiful our local river still is and how it could be much, much better!