Reviewing the Cumbria River Restoration Strategy

Jenny and I are currently involved in a very exciting project evaluating both technical aspects of river restoration and the management processes of the Cumbrian River Restoration Strategy (RRS). Last week we were up in the daffodil covered Lake District to visit four of the restoration projects included on the Cumbrian RRS. After some engaging discussions with representatives from the Environment Agency, Natural England and the three Rivers Trusts (South and West Cumbria, and Eden) we headed out to the first project on the River Gowen where 270m of flood bank has been removed and fences put up to improve instream and floodplain habitats. This was followed by a visit to the Thrimby project on the River Leith, where an impressive amount of glacial boulders were discovered when excavating the old paleo channel. After an ‘interesting’ night at the Villa Bianca on Corney Square we headed for Barnskew on the River Lyvennet. Despite a couple of unfortunate sheep fatalities (due to a fallen tree) the restored river looked healthy with some very energetic geomorphological processes in action. Lastly we visited the project on Whitbeck, a tributary to the Cocker. Last time I visited Whitbeck (for the RRC Site Visit Series in August last year); the new course was still being excavated, so it was very exciting to see the water flowing in the restored river.


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