Pioneering scheme will help to improve River Ecclesbourne

The River Ecclesbourne is one of only ten rivers in the country to benefit from a new approach to protecting and improving the health of its water.

The waterway, which runs from Wirksworth to Duffield, is an important habitat for wildlife such as native crayfish, brown trout, mayflies, kingfishers and water voles.

However, it has been polluted by washing products and fertilisers released from sewage works as well as septic tanks, vehicle washing and agricultural land. Weirs along the river also prevent migration.

Now, Derbyshire County and Amber Valley District Council’s, as well as land owners, farming representatives, the Environment Agency and Severn Trent Water are working together to produce an action plan.The group met this week at Belper’s Strutt’s Centre and want to involve local people in plans to improve the river and will shortly be inviting comment.

They have already improved fencing to protect river banks from damage by cattle and re-opened an old river channel in Duffield so fish can pass a weir.

For more information visit www.environment-agency.gov.uk/research/planning/139235.aspx