Case study:Test and Itchen River Restoration Strategy
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- 1 Project overview
- 2 Image gallery
- 3 Catchment and subcatchment
- 4 Site
- 5 Project background
- 6 Reasons for river restoration
- 7 Measures
- 8 Monitoring
- 9 Additional documents and videos
- 10 Additional links and references
- 11 Supplementary Information
|Project web site|
|Themes||Environmental flows and water resources, Fisheries, Flood risk management, Habitat and biodiversity, Hydromorphology, Monitoring|
|Main contact forename||Heb|
|Main contact surname||Leman|
|Main contact user ID|
|Contact organisation||Environment Agency|
|Contact organisation web site||http://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/environment-agency|
|Partner organisations||Natural England, local fisheries and riparian owners|
| This is a parent project
encompassing the following
|Old Station Beat restoration, River Test at Bossington|
The Test and Itchen River Restoration Strategy is a collaborative project between the Environment Agency, Natural England, local fisheries and riparian owners.
Presently the SSSI status of the Test and Itchen is in unfavourable condition. This is due to historic dredging, the number of structures, industry and historic management. The aim of the Strategy is to collaboratively work with landowners to restore both rivers so that they reach favourable condition in the future.
Up to June 2014, approximately 2km has been improved by bed raising, narrowing and encouraging a change in management. Five restoration projects were completed in 2013 and a further six are planned for 2014.
Project 1: Old Station Beat restoration, River Test at Bossington (completed 2013)
At the Bossington Estate, the Environment Agency and Natural England have worked with Cain Bio-engineering to narrow the channel considerably (up to 40-60% in some sections) to restore a more natural river which has already led to significant improvement in the variety of river bed heterogeneity and in-channel habitats observed. The Estate have supported the project as they would like to attract anglers who prefer fly fishing in a more ‘challenging’ environment, than on other sections of the middle River Test, to offer this in the Test Valley. The total cost of the scheme was approximately £40,000 for 450m of restoration.
Project 2: River Test, Houghton Estate, close to Stockbridge (completed 2013)
The Houghton Club, one of the first fisheries to establish in England if not the world, has been open-minded. They agreed to modify historic bank management practices to enhance the channel and side channel scrapes have been created to reconnect the river to its floodplain in strategic areas. Selective channel narrowing has also taken place. Flooding in winter 2013/4 immediately showed the benefits of reconnecting the river with the surrounding land (which is designated SSSI). From a flood risk management perspective, holding water on this land prior to the river reaching Stockbridge was noted to have had a positive influence on flood risk reduction in the village. The project was jointly funded by the Environment Agency and the Houghton Estate.
Monitoring surveys and results
Students at the University of Southampton are monitoring the Bossington Estate project, and are working with the Environment Agency on other sites too.
The sections of river that have been restored demonstrate the contrasting approaches of contractors working on different sites (see Image Gallery). The extent of channel narrowing and restoration works take into account varying views of the landowners, the aspirations of the fishery and the requirement to improve the SSSI.
Catchment and subcatchment
Cost for project phases
Reasons for river restoration
Hydromorphological quality elements
Biological quality elements
Physico-chemical quality elements
Additional documents and videos