What’s wrong with it?
This SSSI unit is in unfavourable declining condition due to the effects of the artificially straightened channel, which is causing increased erosion of the river bed and limited channel habitat diversity. As a result of this incised channel, there is no seasonal inundation of the surrounding grassland, scrub and woodland habitats, and no interaction with the floodplain.
How do we fix it?
The remedy identified to achieve favourable condition is to restore the original meandering stream and then infill the redundant straightened (drain) channel. The last 100m of straightened channel cuts through Queen Bower SAM. This section will be infilled in accordance with the conditions set out in the Scheduled Monument Clearance issued by English Heritage. The work also includes some scrub and secondary woodland clearance from Fletchers Thorns lawn.
There is one footbridge, one concrete ford and two gravel fords along the length of the watercourse. The concrete ford and footbridge will be maintained for operational and public access. The two gravel fords will be maintained for Agister, Keeper and commoner access.