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Restoring the upper Ivel chalk stream
15 May @ 7:30 pm - 9:00 pmFREE Entry
Come and learn about our river Ivel which rises from springs in Baldock, one of only 225 chalk streams in the world. It is a sad story but also an upbeat one.
There will also be a short video film which tells the story of our river from its heyday, when flow was sufficient to support mills, trout fisheries and a thriving watercress industry, through to the current plight of the river. The springs and upper reaches of the river are now dry for longer periods, largely due to the high quantities of water abstracted (pumped) by the water company (Affinity Water) from the underground aquifer which feeds the springs.
Thanks to community fundraising, RevIvel was able to commission a report from industry expert, John Lawson, which notes the upper Ivel as amongst the most over-abstracted chalk streams in the country.
With John’s advice, the film explains how Affinity Water and Anglian Water have agreed to explore the proposed solution to restore flow to the river. The aim/ hope is that by 2030, the volume of water taken from the aquifer would be substantially reduced to sustainable levels* so the springs and river may thrive again. A circular, low-cost solution is being proposed using largely existing pipelines and facilities. What’s more, this solution may be a pilot project for saving chalk streams nationally. Feasibility studies will start in 2023.
A panel from RevIvel will bring you up to date with progress since the film was completed in December 2022 and also be pleased to answer any questions you may have.