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Showing posts from October, 2009

New Zealand Donation

Quick newsflash to flag up a heartwarming tale from Sheffield. Pictured above is Mike Allen of Wanaka, South Island New Zealand. Here he is with a trout caught on the River Don in South Yorkshire (an escapee rainbow, but we'll let him off!!). Originally from Sheffield, he left for the southern hemisphere in the 1970's. Mike says that when he left, the River Don was a gurgling mess of pollution and is delighted to see what has been achieved over the last 40 years. SPRITE (Sheffield Partnership for Rivers in Town Environments) aims to continue the protection and improvement of the Don in the urbanised reaches of the river. Mike very generously made an outright £50 donation to SPRITE saying that - whilst he couldn't help in a physical sense from his part of the world - he'd like to contribute some financial support to the project. Many, many thanks Mike for supporting a Trout in the Town project that is close to your heart and come back soon. SPRITE's website is now up

"Himeji masu" in the Town

Recent travels to Japan (For a holiday-cum-martial arts competition!) revealed a wonderful example of how urban rivers can thrive and be valued by local residents. In Matsumoto, a medium-sized city in the Nagano prefecture, an engineered channel runs alongside the uptown streets and within it flows the stream known as the “Metoba gawa”. Whilst it is true that the river channel is, overall, constrained within these engineered limits to control flood risk– the authorities have retained the excellent natural substrate and allowed/encouraged natural processes of stream bed erosion, deposition and marginal vegetation development in the base of this channel. The bankside vegetation behind the marginal strip is kept to a low enough level to allow pedestrian access via regular strimming. Consequently, there is a reasonable balance between human access, mown low-level flowering plants and grassland vegetation (supporting many butterflies and other invertebrates) versus more “shaggy” vegetation