Yesterday afternoon Environment Minister Huw Irranca-Davies MP kept his promise to visit two of the endangered rivers in my constituency, the Beane and the Mimram. I was very pleased that the Minister came to see the rivers for himself and that our local rivers groups were able to explain why the rivers run dry are at a round table meeting at Watton at Stone Community Centre.
It was very good to have WWF’s very own Charles Rangeley-Wilson at the event too. He explained the national significance of the chalk rivers of England, and how the WWF’s “Rivers on the Edge Campaign” is trying to save this precious rivers.
At the meeting were representatives from local rivers groups, the Beane Restoration Association (RBRA) and the Friends of the Mimram, the WWF, DEFRA (Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs and the Environment Agency. Presentations were given by Charles Rangeley-Wilson of the WWF, Dave Stimpson, Chairman of the River Beane Restoration Association (RBRA) and Robin Cole of the Friends of the Mimram and warden of the Tewinbury Nature Reserve. The Ministers’ team included his top rivers policy adviser.
We took the Minister to see the dry bed of the River Beane close to the Whitehall Pumping station, which provides the water supply for Stevenage and the Ornamental Bridge at the River Mimram, which is located next to the Nature Reserve and the B1000.