The Broads does not exist in isolation. The Broadland rivers catchment area is more than ten times bigger than the Broads and includes around two thirds of Norfolk and some of North Suffolk.
Water that falls in this area runs, drains, percolates, or is pumped into rivers and ultimately flows through the Broads and out to sea at Great Yarmouth.
A Broadland Catchment Partnership (BCP) has been formed to work together for healthier water and wetlands in the wider area.
The Broads is low lying and located at the bottom of the catchment so is significantly affected, not only by tidal influences, but also by what happens further upstream. The upstream areas of land are mainly arable and generally steeper sloping, and present a greater risk of run-off and pollution from land. Therefore we also need to focus our efforts and resources upstream in the headwaters rather than just in the areas immediately around the Broads.
Working in partnership the Authority has been successful in restoring several broads since our establishment in 1989. Applying this approach to the entire catchment is a huge challenge but is vital if improvements are to be seen.
The catchment has a strong farming heritage, internationally important wildlife, excellent angling, inland navigation, stunning landscapes and coast, historic towns and the city of Norwich. Protecting these special qualities and tackling specific issues that affect water, wildlife, landscape and recreation are important to many individuals and organisations in Norfolk and Suffolk.
There has been some fantastic work by statutory authorities, charities and local groups to deliver successful projects within the catchment. However, these have not always considered all interest groups and rivers, broads and groundwater still fail to meet strict European targets and fall short of national guideline standards for wildlife. Farmers and the public have recently experienced water shortage and also flooding. Climate change and planned development will add further pressure at a time when government expenditure is being cut.
While the catchment has a legacy of good partnership projects to build upon, to make a real difference we have developed an integrated approach with the aim of widespread change in behaviour and multiple benefits to protect and enhance it for the long term.
The Broads Authority volunteered to host and co-ordinate the BCP. Through applying an evidence-based approach and making use of local knowledge and skills the partnership has been able to produce a plan that sets out potential solutions that are practical, sustainable, affordable and of benefit to us all. By working together we can all take the necessary steps to deliver improvements to the environment, society and economy within the Broadland rivers catchment.
The BCP helped to secure funding from WWF and Coca-Cola for a water stewardship project that will:
For further information or to book a free visit please contact:
Alison Smyth, Broadland Farm Adviser, Norfolk Rivers Trust
Neil Punchard, Broadland Catchment Partnership Officer
The BCP secured £31K from Defra’s Catchment Partnership Action Fund (CPAF) a for a ‘Slow the Flow’ project 2015/16 to construct and promote demonstration Rural Sustainable Drainage Systems (RSuDS). The fund was for projects that help to improve Water Framework Directive status of water bodies in 2015/16. The project constructed eight RSuDS across the catchment. These are low tech, low cost solutions that can improve the quality of run-off from fields, roads and urban development. These will act as demonstration sites and it is hoped they will encourage more widespread adoption across the catchment to mitigate against the extreme rainfall events that we are experiencing. Over 100 farmers and landowners have already been taken to see several of our schemes.
Catch up October 2016
Catch up July 2016
Catch up April 2016
Catch up January 2016
Catch up October 2015
Catch Up July 2015
Catch Up March 2015
Catch Up December 2014
Catch Up September 2014
Catch Up June 14
Catch Up October 2013
Catch up July 13
Catch Up May 2013
Catch Up February 2013
Catch Up October 2012