In November I was asked to attend a European Parliament workshop discussing how best to use the new €3.46 Billion LIFE budget to support Environment and Climate, the two elements that LIFE now covers. RRC, on behalf of the LIFE+ RESTORE partners, was chosen as one of two outstanding LIFE projects (from over 4000 others) to highlight key areas of ambition within the new programme.
A final 'RRC staff' blog entry from Ulrika Aberg, whilst she gets settled in her new desk overlooking the lake in Luzern.......
"I worked as Restoration Adviser for the RRC for almost three years, and have now left to take up a new position at Eawag (the Swiss Federal Institute of Aquatic Science and Technology) in Luzern, Switzerland.
Nicola joined us at the beginning of September as the new RRC administrator! She has written a few words for us.
Our final Members Site Visit of the year began close to confluence of the Irfon and Wye at Caer Beris Manor Hotel in Builth Wells. The Irfon was the subject of our visit, which was kindly hosted by Simon Evans from the Wye and Usk Foundation.
During the day, the 18 keen participants managed to visit three very different sites across the catchment. These were all part of the Irfon Special Area of Conservation Project (ISAC), a LIFE+ funded project which was completed in 2014.
There has been a recent addition to our team at the RRC as Hazel Wilson has joined us on a postgraduate placement. To introduce you to Hazel, we asked her a few questions on your behalf.
Where are you from?
I have lived in Worcester for most of my life but I’ve recently been in Nottingham where I completed my undergraduate degree in BSc Geography at the University of Nottingham.
Why are you interested in River Restoration?
On August 28th, I had the pleasure of attending a river habitat workshop on The River Misbourne, Colne catchment, led by The Environment Agency and The Wild Trout Trust. The objective of such workshops is to give participants practical experience of how to manage and improve river habitat for the benefit of wildlife and the community.
I had an opportunity to visit Roadford reservoir in the Southwest to see how the headwater stream there had been restored by skilled volunteers - a beaver family. These were introduced to an 3 ha enclosure to combat encroaching scrub in the culm grassland by Derek Gow, the Devon Wildlife Trust and the landowner, John Morgan. The adjacent headwater streams look pretty natural compared with my local chalk streams - small streams flowing through green wooded valleys.
I am an avid scuba diver and trekker, brought up and educated in Italy. As a marine environmental scientist I am interested in the ability of natural systems to deliver ecosystem services. I have now started my PhD research at Cranfield University in collaboration with the River Restoration Centre. My research concerns river restoration measures and their impact on the hyporheic zone. In particular, my work focuses on assessing the effectiveness of physical restoration under varying hyporheic conditions for ecological and habitat improvement.
There has been a recent addition to our team at the RRC as part of a new initiative. Will Barber has joined us as our Local Engagement and Communications Officer.