Rambling About Rivers
By The Rivers Trust
Rivers are arguably one of the most precious ecosystems on the planet. Despite this, they are under threat. Many of our rivers are barely functioning - but we're stepping in to save them. Tune into Rambling About Rivers to find out more about the threats facing rivers and what you can to do help.
Rambling About RiversDec 19, 2019
17: Reflecting on The Rivers Trust journey
The new year provides the perfect opportunity to reflect on how far we have come and look ahead to future aspirations. This episode, Emily is joined by The Rivers Trust CEO Mark Lloyd, to discuss the formation and growth of The Rivers Trust movement with Arlin Rickard (former CEO of The Rivers Trust) and Ian Gregg (our current president and past Chairman of Greggs). Both Arlin and Ian were instrumental in the creation of The Rivers Trust.
A collection of truly key figures in the Rivers Trust movement chat about their respective roles in its creation and remark on the growth it has seen. As well as looking ahead to future goals and discussing the values at the core of The Rivers Trust movement that need to remain even as the growth continues. A fantastic way to get to know those behind The Rivers Trust and learn more about our journey. If you are looking for a positive, reflective, and at times nostalgic, way to start off 2023, then look no further and give this episode a listen.
16: National Tree Week - The benefits of tree planting
In this episode, Emily and Dan are joined by Steve Edmonds, Eva Bishop, and their Rivers Trust colleague Seren Patterson. Steve is the trees and woodland advisor in the Southwest of England for the National Trust, Eva works as head of communication and education for the Beaver Trust, and Seren is the woodlands for water project lead at The Rivers Trust.
A collection of true tree lovers all working hard to plant more and protect those that we have, discuss their respective projects and the myriad of benefits that trees have on our rivers, wildlife, and environment. The team also chat about the complexities of tree planting, the best ways to get involved, and their favourite tree species.
If you are looking for a good way to round off national tree week, then look no further and give this episode a listen!
Don't forget to tell us what your favourite tree is below!
15: Plastic Free July - how to live a low-waste lifestyle
In this episode, Emily and Dan join their colleagues Gabriella Ghelani and Alisdair Naulls. Gabs is one of The Rivers Trust's Project Communications Officers, and she's been living a low-waste lifestyle since 2019. She's so serious about reducing plastic in the environment that she set up her own business selling plastic-free alternatives, as well as offering a mobile refill service for household products. Ali is the Engagement & Communities Lead on Plastic Pollution, and is a pro when it comes to sparking behavioural change. The team chat about how to cut down on plastic at its source, and how to tackle it once it's already in the environment.
If you've been debating taking the plunge into a lower-waste lifestyle, you'll want to give this one a listen!
14: A Guide to Outdoor Swimming (Henley Swim Festival Special)
In today's episode, we talk to Olympic silver medallist Keri-anne Payne and founder of Outdoor Swimmer Magazine Simon Griffiths about all things outdoor swimming! We mine their years of experience and knowledge on open water swimming on a variety subjects from how to prepare for long swims to the mental health benefits of outdoor swimming.
With Henley Swim festival fast-approaching, this is the perfect preparation for all of our amazing fundraisers to get important tips and tricks from 2 of the most experienced outdoor swimmers in the UK.
We spoke about lots of resources which you can find below via these links:
Buy Simon's book: https://www.bloomsbury.com/uk/swim-wild-and-free-9781399400404/
Order Outdoor Swimmer's Trends Report: https://outdoorswimmer.com/news/coming-soon-trends-in-outdoor-swimming-2022
Sign up for Keri-anne's swimming courses: https://straightlineswimming.com/
Wild open water app: https://wildopenwater.com/
13: Wanderlust Women
The latest episode of Rambling About Rivers is a celebration of International Women's Day where we talk to Amira Patel, founder of the Wanderlust Women - a hiking and adventure group for Muslim women - which aims to break down the barriers and stereotypes of the niqab and challenge misconceptions of Muslim women.
Today, Emily and Jayne pass the mic to Amira (amira_thewanderlust on Instagram) who talks about what inspired her to start the amazing Wanderlust Women group, the way reclaiming green spaces as places for Muslim women has helped create a welcoming community that allows women to express their passion for nature, and how she developed her own love for the outdoors, recognising it as a space of healing and imaginative exploration. Amira's excitement and energy has helped build up a group which started off as a singular pursuit and grew as people gravitated towards green and blue spaces during the pandemic to what it is today.
12: Unlocking the Severn
The latest episode of Rambling About Rivers is all about the return of the Twaite Shad on the River Severn. This iconic species was a common sight in the Severn over 100 years ago, but the construction of a large number of weirs led to populations collapsing.
Today, Dan and Jayne are joined by Rosie Croggon, Education Officer at Severn Rivers Trust and Charles Crundwell, Senior Technical Specialist in Fisheries at the Environment Agency. Rosie and Charles help us to explore the history of this iconic species, and look at some of the groundbreaking work they have carried out to improve the migratory journey for the Shad fish through their Unlocking the Severn project. This partnership project sees Severn Rivers Trust working with Canal and River Trust, Environment Agency and Natural England, with the goal of restoring 158 miles of river!
11: You can't polish a turd, but you can put it on a map!
How much do you know about sewage in rivers?
You might remember a previous episode where we spoke to Anneka France from our data team about the Sewage Map they produced, which showed the frequency of untreated sewage being released into rivers. Give episode 9 a listen if you want to catch up.
Recently, we updated the Sewage Map with 2020 data - so Anneka's back to give us the low-down on the data behind the map.
This time, Dan and Jayne are also joined by Christine Colvin, Director of Partnerships and Communications at The Rivers Trust. They discuss the immense work which went into producing the map, and look at the bigger picture of sewage pollution in rivers.
10: People power: the Pymmes BrookERS
"It's like getting to know a person, but one who can't speak. We felt we had to be advocates for [the] river"
This week, we join Dan and Jayne in conversation with Alison Archer from the Pymmes BrookERS: a group of community volunteers working together to restore their local waterways. Working in conjunction with our local Trust Thames21, the Pymmes BrookERS have made a huge impact on their local environment. The creation of Broomfield Park Wetland—a gorgeous, biodiverse wetland in the centre of Enfield—has been one of their crowning achievements. Tune in to find out more about how communities can come together to restore the natural world.
This podcast follows on from episode 8: Why wetlands? You don't need to have heard episode 8 to enjoy this episode, but it provides more background if you are interested.
9: Putting sewage pollution on the map
At The Rivers Trust, we have been stirring some 💩 about what is REALLY going into our rivers. In June, we kicked off our new campaign, Together For Rivers, to introduce designated bathing water standards into well-used rivers across the UK 🏊
To launch the campaign, our incredible Data Team created an interactive map to locate where and how often sewage was being released into rivers in England. One of the data minds behind this map is Anneka France, GIS Analyst at The Rivers Trust. In the latest episode of #RamblingAboutRivers, we join Jayne and Dan in conversation with Anneka to find out more about sewage pollution and talk about the next steps.
8: Why wetlands?
Our local Trusts play a huge role in the creation and improvement of wetlands. Last year, Thames21 played a part in developing a number of urban wetlands in and around London. They're not stopping there, though, and have plans to create even more wetlands around the capital. So why the big push on wetlands—and what does this mean for the environment and community?
Dan and Jayne speak to John Bryden, Senior Programmes Manager at Thames21. We speak about the wetlands the Trust has created, and find out more about the process of sculpting an entirely new habitat. In addition, we take a closer look at the benefits that wetlands can deliver - ranging from improved biodiversity to reduced flood risk. There are a number of challenges associated with carrying out this type of work in urban wetlands, and we find out more about these from John.
In part two of this podcast, we hope to speak to the community volunteers involved in one of these projects to find out more about how it has impacted their lives. Stay tuned!
7: Blue spaces and nature-based prescriptions
In today's episode, Dan and Jayne speak to Elle Hunt: a freelance journalist with articles in The Observer magazine, Tortoise, New Scientist and a range of other publications. Her Guardian article, "Blue Spaces: why time spent near water is the secret of happiness", serves as the starting point for today's discussion. What do blue spaces mean for our mental health? How has the Covid-19 impacted our appreciation of natural spaces? Find out more in Rambling About Rivers.
6: Can rivers help our mental and physical health?
This year, it feels more important than ever to reach out and talk about mental health. Covid-19 is having a huge effect on mental health—whether that’s through the tragic loss of family members, or the jarring effects of lockdown. For many, nature provides a sanctuary during these strange times; a place to find peace and serenity amidst the chaos.
In today's episode, Dan and Jayne speak to Jack Spees: Chief Executive of Ribble Rivers Trust. In honour of Mental Health Awareness Week, they discuss the link between rivers and mental wellbeing. Could rivers play a role in helping to reduce stress and anxiety? Find out more in this episode of Rambling About Rivers.
5: Supporting a Grassroots Community
In this episode, Jayne and Dan are joined by Alex Beasley, the Country Manager (UK, Ireland & Nordics) from Patagonia.
For almost 40 years, Patagonia has supported grassroots activists working to find solutions to the environmental crisis. In this podcast, Alex speaks about why supporting the grassroots community is so important to the Patagonia brand. We learn more about the Patagonia's origin, as well as diving into more detail about their new platform, Action Works.
4: Climate motivation: what can we learn from the Netherlands?
In this episode, Dan and Jayne are joined by Floris Boogard, Professor at Hanze University in the Netherlands and one of the founders of ClimateCafé. ClimateCafé is a global citizen science movement, intended to motivate the public to be a part of the solution to climate change. We speak about WaterCo-Governance (WaterCoG), the importance of involving young people in conversations about climate change, and hear more about some of the fantastic solutions ClimateCafé has generated thus far.
3: Swimming in rivers... are you mad?
In this podcast, we join Jayne Mann (Marketing and Communications Manager at The Rivers Trust) and Dan Turner (Senior Project Officer at Yorkshire Dales Rivers Trust) as they talk to Ella Foote, a Contributing Editor at Outdoor Swimmer Magazine and keen wild swimmer. During December, Ella completed her "Dip a Day" challenge in which she swam in a different river every day, asking the question "Are our rivers as bad as headlines suggest?". So far, her fundraiser has raised an incredible total of £1,195!
Thank you to the North Sea Region Interreg project, WaterCoG, for sponsoring this podcast.
2: Are our rivers being used as 'open sewers'?
Are our rivers being used as 'open sewers'? Tune into the second episode of Rambling about Rivers to find out!
In this episode, we join Jayne Mann (Marketing and Communications Manager at The Rivers Trust) and Dan Turner (Senior Project Officer at Yorkshire Dales Rivers Trust) as they interview Karen Shackleton, Founding member of Ilkley Clean River Group. We find out more about what has happened to the river at Ilkley, and what is being done to revive it.
1: Can we believe in better for our rivers?
Is there still hope to bring our rivers back from the brink? Tune into the debut episode of Rambling about Rivers to find out!
In this episode, we join Jayne Mann (Marketing and Communications Manager at The Rivers Trust) and Dan Turner (Senior Project Officer at Yorkshire Dales Rivers Trust) as they interview Alistair Maltby, Operations Director at The Rivers Trust. We find out more about The Rivers Trust movement, the threats facing our rivers, and how you can get involved.