Liz Viggars (SusWoT) Peter Coleman-Smith (SusWoT), Bryony Cole (Sea Mills and Coombe Dingle Climate Action Group), Zac Jones (Sea Mills and Coombe Dingle Climate Action Group),Roger Moses (Friends of Badock’s Wood),Mark Thompson (Henleaze Swimming Club)
Alistair Backwell (Friends of Blaise),Alex Dunn (SusWoT),Alice Cleverly & Mark Maggs (Sustainable Henbury and Brentry) Frances Robertson (Friends of Badock’s Wood),Di Bunniss (FOB),
Henleaze Swimming Club
Henleaze Swimming Club have now joined the Trout in the Trym project and will be represented by Mark Thompson (Trustee) and Jodi Peacham (Grounds Manager). Mark was welcomed to the meeting and explained that Henleaze Lake has its own set of water quality issues in respect of nutrients and bacteria. These are most likely to arise from ground water rather than the inputs to the Lake. Peter has conducted a pond-dipping exercise.
Limited Balsam has been found so far this year. There has been remarkably little Balsam in areas where Balsam was removed early and thoroughly in 2021. Careful watch is being maintained. SusWoT are including Balsam removal in their Sunday activities and will look to reintroduce evening sessions.
There is no Himalayan Balsam at Henleaze Lake – they have Russian Vine to contend with instead. It was noted that Balsam Removal has started at Brislington Brook – where they have been tackling the problem for the last 10 years.
River Cleaning See map for current situation
SusWoT is continuing to hold twice-weekly river cleaning – predominantly in Henbury and Brentry and Coombe Dingle.
Henbury and Brentry:
Work continues in Crow Lane. There are layers and layers that need to be removed here.
No Trout in the Trym cleaning work has so far been done in Blaise. There is no known significant problem. An examination will be made in the summer and any work undertaken.
Coombe Dingle and Sea Mills:
Half this stretch has been done. See map, however more needs to be done when drier in the summer. Zac spotted four Kingfishers together on a branch over the river yesterday.
No work done so far. A check will need to be done in the summer.
The Wildlife park are assumed to be keeping their section clear.
Southmead Trym Valley:
This has looked at on 6 March when it was very clear. Another clean took place on 24 April when the river and site were rendered very clean and no HB found. The cow parsley and grass was growing very well so there may be some hidden litter, but the site looked great after the work was finished. A lot of new rubbish was removed.
Silt Traps and Weirs
Alastair, Alex, Liz and Roger met with Caroline Ennion (Parks) and two of the Blaise Rangers to discuss the silt problem and possible solutions. Issues include the anaerobic nasty dangerous state of the ponds, costs, heritage, visitor appeal, fish health, dogs, documentation. The key for the trap has been found and a plan made to explore the traps (the weather was too bad to do this on the day). If the traps are in good condition then it should be feasible to clear them at limited costs. However if they are damaged, they will need to be fenced off and a new strategy developed.
The metal sheet that is used to divert the river around the silt traps (there are more than one) has been vandalised, and may be missing. It will be repaired or replaced to see what the effect on Water quality is
Action (suspended until we understand more about the silt traps and weirs: Alastair to contact Theo Pike and ask what are the things we might do. The report WTT provided was fishcentric, we need to manage heritage, visitors and fish. (Alex offered to contact if needed.)
Three walks took place on the weekend 21-22 May and were deemed successful with around a dozen people on each walk. Three or four people did all thee walks. It was felt that the first Walk (Sea Mills to Westbury Village) might have been a bit too long. The walk leaders were keen to repeat the walks next year – we may split the sections slightly differently – and there could be an opportunity to include the Wildlife Park
Bristol Avon Catchment Partnership Meeting
Was on 26 April. Alex, Alastair and Peter attended. The following issues were raised. Balsam, River Cleaning, More support for our newer Groups, Outfall Survey, Remove Barriers. Ponds/Silt, Rebending, Community Programs, Wessex Water. Next meeting in July(?)
Climate and Ecological Emergency Community Grant
The new Council fund (up to £5,000 p. application) that is supporting nature initiatives:
The grant programme is targeted at community groups or small not-for-profit organisations based and working in Bristol. Grant opens on 9th May, closes on 23rd June 2022. Details here.
If you have an idea fo something Trout in the Trym could apply for and run properly please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
So far there are no suggestions as to what we might do. The general agreement was that by applying for and getting such a grant we would no longer be our own masters, so best to carry on with what we are doing already.
Quartet in the community Report
We’ve been asked to provide this by end of June. it was agreed that we should produce high quality report with the intention of building a strong relationship with Wessex Water.
Action: Alex to produce report and Submit
Pollution Incidents – reporting
Action All Please continue to report pollution incidents to Peter and Liz. We are keen to track down the key pollution source so they can be followed up and fixed.
Lydia had reported pollution to Wessex but had heard nothing. Action Peter to chase up.
We discussed the potential issues of the housebuilding going on in North Bristol around Hazel Brook. The relief sewer should help alleviate problems.
Wessex Water has a Water Guardians programme in Dorset. This may be a model to adopt in our area.
Yellow fish and rain in drain awareness
We will do this, however at the moment schools are overloaded. Peter has emailed the BART project office to find out what happened with the last Yellow Fish Campaign
Action Peter: to chase for response
Blaise Museum Opening 1 June.
Roger, Peter, Frances and Di organised a large stall at this event. The stall had three multimedia sections: An information stand including the TitT wildlife leaflet and information cards containing QR codes with links to the website, a TV for Roger to help people recognise bird songs, and a table for children to explore what could be found in a bucket of water from the river. Around 100 families engaged with the project. This was considered a successful outreach project and we discussed the possibility of running the stall at other events – eg the Westbury Village Show.
Action Roger to consider the possibility of attending the Village Show (wotvs.co.uk) on 3 September