Case study:West Amesbury

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Location: 51° 10' 11", -1° 48' 2"
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Project overview

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Status Complete
Project web site
Themes Environmental flows and water resources, Habitat and biodiversity, Hydromorphology
Country England
Main contact forename Martijn
Main contact surname Antheunisse
Main contact user ID User:Martijnantheunisse
Contact organisation Wiltshire Wildlife Trust
Contact organisation web site
Partner organisations Environment Agency, Natural England, Wessex Water, Wiltshire Fishery Association, The Piscatorial Society
Parent multi-site project

Case_study:Strategic Framework for Restoration of the River Avon (SFfRRA)

This is a parent project
encompassing the following
Moor Hatches site from bridge (facing downstream)

Project summary

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The project’s aims were to undo the effects of detrimental physical alteration in the past, such as dredging and channelization; sediment issues; and loss of habitat for fish and plants. These aims were tackled through the following objectives:

Drought proofing rivers Mitigating climate change (hydrology, temperature) by reinstating natural processes of erosion and deposition and planting trees for shade and as a future source of natural woody debris.

Reducing the amount of sediment within the channel By promoting scour of the river bed through increasing flow velocity and by installing brushwood structures to act as sediment traps, the project will improve the site for salmonid spawning as well as helping to maintain the signature ‘gin clear’ waters of a chalk stream.

Create habitat for fish, plants The structures installed in this project are aimed to provide habitat for a variety of plants, fish, invertebrates, birds and mammals, either through the introduction of food in the form of woody debris and leaf matter, or the provision of spawning habitat and cover.

Monitoring surveys and results

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The project site is being monitored by the Piscatorial Society. Monitoring involves invertebrate sampling, electro-fish survey and fixed point photography. Results have yet to be analysed.

Lessons learnt

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Archaeological considerations and heavy rainfall/flooding both caused considerable delay and a change in the scope of this project. Due to the proximity of the Stonehenge World Heritage site, English Heritage was not happy with the original restoration plan, so the project was delayed to re-plan. During this time the area received record rainfall, leading to flooding which prevented work from being undertaken. For future projects, further time should be allowed to fully investigate potential archaeological issues and allow for bad weather/environmental delays.

Image gallery

From hatches facing upstream, prior to project delivery.
From hatches facing upstream, post project delivery.

Catchment and subcatchment


River basin district South West
River basin Hampshire Avon


River name Hampshire Avon (Upper)
Area category 100 - 1000 km²
Area (km2)
Maximum altitude category 200 - 500 m
Maximum altitude (m) 212
212 m
0.212 km
21,200 cm
Dominant geology Calcareous
Ecoregion Great Britain
Dominant land cover Arable and Horticulture
Waterbody ID GB108043022350

Other case studies in this subcatchment: Gunville Phase I, Longstreet A 91a, River Avon Habitat Enhancement, Fifield, River Avon at East Chisenbury


WFD water body codes GB108043022350
WFD (national) typology
WFD water body name Hampshire Avon (Upper)
Pre-project morphology
Reference morphology
Desired post project morphology
Heavily modified water body No
National/international site designation
Local/regional site designations
Protected species present No
Invasive species present No
Species of interest
Dominant hydrology
Dominant substrate
River corridor land use
Average bankfull channel width category
Average bankfull channel width (m)
Average bankfull channel depth category
Average bankfull channel depth (m)
Mean discharge category
Mean annual discharge (m3/s)
Average channel gradient category
Average channel gradient
Average unit stream power (W/m2)

Project background

Reach length directly affected (m) 400m
0.4 km
40,000 cm
Project started 2012/02/21
Works started 2012/10/01
Works completed 2013/12/02
Project completed
Total cost category 50 - 100 k€
Total cost (k€)
Benefit to cost ratio
Funding sources Catchment Restoration Fund

Cost for project phases

Phase cost category cost exact (k€) Lead organisation Contact forename Contact surname
Investigation and design
Stakeholder engagement and communication
Works and works supervision
Post-project management and maintenance

Reasons for river restoration

Mitigation of a pressure Impoundments (not hydropower)
Hydromorphology Flow velocities, Channel pattern/planform, Continuity of sediment transport
Biology Fish, Invertebrates, Macrophytes
Other reasons for the project


Structural measures
Bank/bed modifications Bed raising, Bank reprofiling
Floodplain / River corridor Wetland restoration, Habitat creation
Planform / Channel pattern Re-meandering, Improvement of natural flows, Creation of meanders
Non-structural measures
Management interventions
Social measures (incl. engagement)


Hydromorphological quality elements

Element When monitored Type of monitoring Control site used Result
Before measures After measures Qualitative Quantitative

Biological quality elements

Element When monitored Type of monitoring Control site used Result
Before measures After measures Qualitative Quantitative

Physico-chemical quality elements

Element When monitored Type of monitoring Control site used Result
Before measures After measures Qualitative Quantitative

Any other monitoring, e.g. social, economic

Element When monitored Type of monitoring Control site used Result
Before measures After measures Qualitative Quantitative

Monitoring documents

Additional documents and videos

Additional links and references

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Supplementary Information

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