Riverbank/Riparian Management

We have undertaken several riverbank management projects, two of which are currently ongoing and work is continuing each year to improve the riverbank habitat, both in terms of management to ensure adequate flow and for the benefit of wildlife.

Most riverbank habitats in southern England involve the management of Willow pollards, the majority of which are no longer maintained by the Environment Agency due to their antecedent and current policies. This has led to most inland tributaries, stream and brooks becoming blocked by collapsed willow pollards that have not been managed. The collapsed limbs take root in the river bed and grow, creating a living barrier to water flow and debris, causing reduced flow rates and consequent flooding water levels rise, as was illustrated in July 2007.

We have undertaken clearing 2 miles of the Evenlode near Witney in Oxfordshire over the past 2 years; pollarding sound willows, removing blockages in the stream and removing collapsed, rotten and damaged pollards to create a more manageable riverbank habitat that is still beneficial to wildlife but allows management of the river and ensures continued flow in times of flood.

We can replant with native riparian species such as Alder, Willow, Poplar and Hawthorn to fill gaps and give stability to river banks that are suffering from erosion.

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