River Roeburn Remembering - Restoring. A series of events This includes events organised in Wray by the village, Wray heritage Group, Lancaster University and others.
50 years ago. Wray Flood 8 Aug 1967- 2017
Activities to stimulate understanding of river flows and to engage the community in thinking how we might collaborate to restore the River Roeburn for the future stability of Wray and Roeburndale.
Memories What was the River Roeburn like pre 1967? Memories of crayfish and otters; Abundance - barrels of salted fish; spawning grounds for sea trout; water quality. What events may have contributed to the flood damage? Post war drainage grips; fires that destroyed the blanket bog; tree landslips and log jams in the river; skating on the river; Have upland mires or wetland been lost? Old photos. Wray Heritage Group. Wray School interviewing the Elders. David Kenyon – photos.
Observations How has the River Roeburn and its catchment altered over the last 50 years? Erosion patterns; continued erosion; Speed of rise of water level with flash flooding; decline in numbers and variety of fish; changes in wildlife present (otters, white clawed crayfish). Effects of flood Desmond in Dec 2016. What problems have the recent floods caused? Discussions with farmers and residents living close to the river.
Science - Engaging University, Agencies, Funding bodies- research potential Understanding the water flows and what makes a storm damaging. Reading the evidence on the ground. Climate change and the expected changes in rainfall and drought. Techniques that can slow the flow and reduce flash flooding – check dams; In River Training; swales; tree planting along contours; flood meadows; identifying nick points; regenerative agriculture increasing the water retention; re-establishing blanket bog; recreating spawning grounds: Working with scale model of the river. Lancaster University. Backsbottom Farm, Environment Agency, Natural England, Lune Rivers Trust, The flow Partnership.
Engaging the local community – Farmers, Local residents, Local children. Building an understanding of flooding and its effects on the community now and in the future. How would the residents of Roeburndale and Wray like to see the River Roeburn develop? Creating an educational resource for children and local residents. Connecting with other communities working to slow the flow. Possibly Stroud, Hebden Bridge. Slovakia -Michael Kravick or Pickering Backsbottom Farm, Wray School, Wray Heritage Group.
Arts Using arts to enrich the understanding of flooding and its effects and using this to engage the wider community into taking action. Poetry; paintings; land art; music and dance. Celebration. River Photo competition. Film making with Mark Minard and Bryony Rogers. Richard Shilling; Mike Barlow; Anthony Bilton: Eli Denvir: Dawn Morgan; More Music in Morecambe.
Education Throughout this series of events the local community, residents, farmers, school children, university students and agencies will engage with the issues of flooding and the techniques for Slow the Flow. This may lead to future employment with this area of expertise. Setting up a Slow the Flow demonstration area and developing a manual for hill farmers.
21 April – 1 May Wray Heritage Group setting up photo exhibition of Wray Flood in Wray Church.
1 May Wray Fair. Opportunity to engage with local community with River Roeburn.
Mid April onwards film the progress of events to eventually produce good educational film resource on engaging the community and Slowing the Flow.(if you would like to help make this let me know.
May 14th Start 10.30 am. River and bluebell walk and picnic. Rod Everett will lead a walk from Wray Flood Garden up the river past Roeburnscar, Backsbottom Farm and Roeburndale Woods to see how the river was affected by Wray Flood and Flood Desmond and how it may be restored. Old photographs will help to illustrate the changes over the years and highlight potential problems in the future. This coincides with the wonderful Roeburndale bluebells. Bring a picnic to share. This will be an opportunity for encouraging community engagement and discussions related to the restoration process.
August 8th 50th anniversary of Wray Flood. River Blessing.
Arts; music; dance; poetry; photo exhibition of river changes; River photos competition; Films of other Slow the Flow projects; flood walks including seeing swales, check dams, in river training, blanket bog restoration and active erosion. For more details(draft).
Sept - October Farmers event demonstrating potential for slow the flow implementation ton their land and how Countryside Stewardship can help with funding.
Flooding - Understanding the Natural Water Cycle, Why flooding happens and the Holistic Management of River Catchments Download Document
I have been exploring the effects of rocks in rivers. See video below for an explanation of how they alter the river flow.