Salhouse Restoration Work Nominated for National Award (UK)
Work to restore an eroded reed bed and spit of land at Salhouse Broad using dredgings from the nearby river has been selected as a finalist for a prestigious national award.
The innovative project has demonstrated how dredging the Broads can become a win win situation for boaters and wildlife alike and it has now been nominated for the 2013 Water Renaissance Awards.
The techniques used have attracted huge national and international interest and lead the way for future projects in the Broads and beyond.
Sediment from the River Bure has been used to fill giant woven geotextile bags, big enough for a car to drive through, which have been supported by alder poles cut from nearby river banks.
The bags, which have a circumference of 18.6 metres, have sunk below the waterline to form a 170m retaining wall, and the void behind the bags has been filled in with sediment. The mud has been planted with reed seed and rhizomes taken from encroaching reed fringes in the nearby river to help restore the 7,000m ² reed bed as it would have looked 60 years ago.
William Coulet, the Broads Authority’s PRISMA project manager, said: “It can often be a problem finding places to dispose of dredged mud. However this pilot scheme has underlined the fact that sediment should be regarded as a resource rather than a waste. It has involved improvements to both navigation and conservation by dredging 12,000 m³ of mud, creating a 7,000 m² reed-bed and rebuilding a spit of land between the river and Salhouse Broad which is popular for moorings.
“This recognition by the Waterways Renaissance Awards is an acknowledgement of the multiple achievements of this project and something which the team working on it richly deserve.”
For the past 11 years the Awards have recognised over 120 exceptional projects that have transformed the nation’s canals and rivers into exciting places. Led by an independent panel of experts from the environmental, engineering, architecture and regeneration sectors, the Awards are highly regarded across the UK and shine the spotlight on the tremendous work done by volunteers, local communities and public, private and voluntary organisations to keep our canals and rivers special.
Helen Carey, chair of the assessment panel, said: “It is truly inspiring to see how people and organisations across the country are working together to protect, improve and care for our canals and rivers. All projects reaching the finalist stage should be justifiably proud of all that they have achieved.”
The project, which cost £230,000, was part funded by the European Regional Development Fund under the PRISMA project (Promoting Integrated Sediment Management ) which was set up to develop innovative solutions for dredging and treating and reusing sediment from our waterways.
The design was the result of sharing expertise with the Broads Authority’s partners — a water board in Holland, a navigation authority in Belgium and a specialist engineering university in France.
The ceremony for the awards, run annually by the Canal & River Trust, will take place on Thursday 23 May at the ICC in Birmingham.
Press Release, April 26, 2013