Thursday, December 9, 2021
HomeNewsRiver experts to visit Rodley Nature Reserve's restoration projects

River experts to visit Rodley Nature Reserve’s restoration projects

River restoration experts from around the UK will be visiting Rodley Nature Reserve as part of this month’s national River Restoration Centre annual conference.

The two-day conference brings together professionals from all areas of river restoration including contractors, engineers, consultants, academics, and representatives from trusts, local organisations, and government agencies.

The event, to be held in Harrogate, includes around 50 speakers, workshop sessions and many other opportunities to network and make new contacts.

rodley nature reserve
Rodley Nature Reserve

Delegates will be visiting Rodley Nature Reserve to see and hear about two restoration projects – a new wetland and a fish pass – which were completed by Yorkshire Water in partnership with volunteers at the nature reserve through the Rodley Nature Reserve Trust, Arup, MMB, the Environment Agency and Fountains Forestry.

The fish bypass channel was completed in 2013 on the River Aire to bypass Rodley weir, which posed a significant barrier to migratory species such as brown trout, European eel, lamprey and salmon.

The bypass channel forms part of Yorkshire Water’s fish pass programme, which has removed obstacles to fish migration right across the region.  Working in partnership with the Rivers Trust and Environment Agency, these coordinated efforts are helping the return of iconic species like Salmon to the rivers of Yorkshire.

This year, the duck marsh at the reserve was redeveloped to improve habitat diversity for wetland species, as part of the utility company’s £1.6m Water Works for Wildlife initiative to deliver biodiversity enhancement to 15 designated local wildlife sites across its estate in the next four years.

Yorkshire Water, Rodley Nature Reserve and Fountains Forestry partnered to re-landscape the space to create a variety of water depths to promote species diversity.

It is hoped the project will attract new species including Little Ringed Plover, Common Tern and passage migrants together with the current species that visit the reserve.

Mark Tinsdeall, environmental assessment manager at Yorkshire Water, said:

“Both of the schemes at Rodley Nature Reserve are fantastic examples of Yorkshire Water working in partnership with other organisations to deliver improvements as part of a wider aim to improve the environment of Yorkshire.

“The work at Rodley has further enhanced its reputation as a world class, award-winning nature reserve. We, and the Rodley Nature Reserve Trust, are delighted to be able to welcome delegates to the site to see the restoration work for themselves.”

Rodley Nature Reserve was created on a floodplain in the Kirkstall Valley, between River Aire & Leeds and Liverpool Canal.

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