boost for Cornwall's rivers
Objective One is
helping to breathe new life into Cornwall’s rivers thanks to a £1.86 million
project to improve the environment in targeted river catchments across
The Westcountry Rivers Trust, which has seen phenomenal success with similar
projects in other parts of the region, has received an Objective One grant
for £744,500 towards the Cornwall Rivers Project (which forms Phase II
of their Westcountry Rivers Project).
The Trust, an independent charitable organisation set up to protect and
enhance the region’s rivers and streams by working with landowners and
the wider community, will provide free practical advice for around 660
Cornish farmers and landowners on improving resource management through
integrated land and river management plans.
Incomes and the environment both benefit through a range of approaches
including the managed use of fertilisers and the targeted use of manures,
soil conservation measures and improved waste management, all of which
reduce the impact of agriculture on rivers. The project is also able to
offer capital grants toward the fencing of watercourses and fishery improvement
The project is modelled on a pilot scheme the Trust delivered for the
river Tamar between 1996 and 2000, when 300 land managers received detailed
site-specific advice that identified economic opportunities with significant
This was followed by the Westcountry Rivers Project Phase I, which was
competed last July and delivered over an 18-month period. It dealt with
the catchment of the rivers Taw and Torridge in North Devon, and has benefited
a further 330 land managers. Phase II will see that project extended to
Arlin Rickard, Director of the Westcountry Rivers Trust, said: “We’ve
had great success working in partnership with farmers and river owners
in North Devon and we want to bring that to Cornwall by focusing on best
farming practice and the protection, rehabilitation and improvement of
the Cornish river environment.
“More and more people recognise that an integrated approach together with
the application of best farming practice can provide economic gains and
have a beneficial impact on the rural and riparian environment through
reducing diffuse pollution. This project aims to support farmers and other
landowners by offering practical advice and helping them draw up integrated
farm and river management plans that make the most of their resources
including opportunities for diversification, including angling. We can
also provide capital grants to help them undertake river-bank fencing
works for the benefit of the river and wildlife.
“The project also aims to reduce soil erosion from agricultural land,
localised flooding and other adverse effects while encouraging community
involvement in the management of river environments through the development
of angling opportunities, education and occasional river walks.”
The project, which is expected to create 19 full-time jobs, will survey
and target work to revitalise ten key rivers and their tributaries throughout
the county including the rivers Lynher, Fowey, Camel, Ottery, Inny, East
and West Looe, Seaton, Neet and Strat, Fal and Cober.
The Westcountry Rivers Trust is working with BDB Associates, Royal Holloway
Institute for Environmental Research, the Environment Agency, South West
Water and Imerys to deliver the project.
The £744,500 from Objective One is being match funded by the Department
of the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, with £364,870 coming from
private sector partners.
If you want to get involved in the project and to find out more please
contact the Westcountry Rivers Trust on 01566 784488.
For more information contact:
Arlin Rickard, Director)
Westcountry Rivers Trust
Tel: 01566 784488
Objective One Partnership Office
Truro TR1 2UD