The data thats just been released by the wonderful Rivers Trust, shows a concerning and increasing duration of Sewage Overflows from our local Sewage Treatment Works into the Cam and Rhee.
Haslingfield still has a high level of sewage overflows, although this may be due to problems with a sensor being incorrectly positioned. As the sensor was relocated in September 2021, shortly before Cam Valley Forum’s vist, we hope to see a very much reduced duration of overflows in 2022.
Melbourn overflows are increasing worryingly, which maybe explains why we saw very high levels of E-coli in the River Mel just downstream of the Sewage Works when we tested it on 19 January 2022. Anglian Water say this is due to “Ground water inundation”, but the River Mel Restoration Group are right to be concerned.
Concerningly, over the last 3 years, the duration of Sewage Overflows from Cambridge Riverside has been steadily increasing, although from a low level.
The Cam from Grantchester to Cambridge: A much loved river in need of our care.
This report is an appreciation of the River Cam from Grantchester to Cambridge, outlining the threats it faces and the context and importance of the river. It illustrates the entire 2.8 miles length of the “upper river”, from Byrons Pool to Kings Mill Weir in Cambridge, and may provide a better understanding of the river’s rich history and precious ecology. It is hoped that it may motivate more people to want to protect it from damage, now and in the future.
This is first of the documents that has been prepared as part of Cam Valley Forum’s “Cam Safer Swim Initiative” (CSSI) If you would like to commment on the report, or get involved in our work to make the Cam safer for swimming, contact email@example.com
The Cam Valley Forum recently consulted about designating part of the River Cam as a “Bathing Water”. This would benefit river users by prompting work to improve the quality of the water. Our proposals are here:
Cam between Littlebury and Little Chesterford, 19 Oct 2019 (c) Mike Foley
We are horified to discover that the Environment Agency is proposing, once again, to blanket spray herbicide along large stretches of our precious rivers and streams. We object strongly to this, and urge the EA to put their money and resources to better use.
You can see a summary of our progress (or not) below, and a full log here of the reports that we have received of damage caused by blanket herbicide spraying
Update 26 June 2020
We understand that discussions are ongoing in the Environment Agency and hope for a positive outcome. In the meantime we would welcome any further views and evidence from river users to help us press our concerns home and ensure that the funds earmarked for spraying are instead used for positive work to enhance our rivers.
Update 4 June 2020
In early June, we were horrified to discover that the Environment Agency is proposing, once again, to blanket spray herbicide along large stretches of our precious rivers and streams. They say this is “to maintain sinuosity within the channel to help reduce flood risk”
They sent this out for consultation to selected key conservation organisations a few weeks ago, with a deadline for responses of 5 June. However, as many staff are on furlough, it has only just come to our attention.
You can read our formal consultation response here
Despite floods, cold weather warnings and even a few flurries of snow, our contractors ML Partnership start the massive task of pruning back the overhanging trees that have been causing such trouble trapping pennywort on the upper Cam.
It’s going to be a big job!
Wet weather has made the access track on the east bank impassible, so they’re working from 2 large punts on loan from Scudamores.
These were brought up river by two Cam Valley Forum volunteers, Simon and Alec, a few days before