Nature Conservation Lewisham

Get involved in Lewisham's parks and nature reserves


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London Rivers Week – Saturday June 23 to Sunday July 1

Thames 21 writes….

London Rivers Week

Do you cherish rivers and enjoy exploring them? Do you love the wildlife that roams our countryside? Do you want to learn about what’s being done to protect London’s life-giving rivers and how you can help? 

Then join us for the third annual London Rivers Week, running from Saturday June 23 to Sunday July 1. This year’s theme is Valuing Water, and our partners are putting on a fascinating list of free activities, with something for all the family – from walks and talks and a kayak event to demonstrations and even a film premiere.

You won’t want to miss our launch event on Sunday 24th June, at Ladywell Fields from 12pm to 3pm.

You’ll be able to become a dragonfly detective, explore what’s in the water through river dipping and make discoveries through riverfly monitoring.

The event will be a showcase of citizen science programmes by a range of partners.

Find out, for example, how Thames21 volunteers collect data about the types of plastic found in the Thames, or how water quality is tested by robot boats. There are 600km of waterways in the capital. That’s the same as the distance between Brighton and Edinburgh.

And during the week, you’ll have the chance to learn about the issues that affect many of them.

Do you fancy getting to know your local stretch of river better by clearing litter? Or taking over the invasive species which also choke our rivers? We’ve also got events like that, which will help you make a difference to these lifebloods for wildlife.

Otters, trout, bats, kingfishers and eels all use London rivers – but increasingly they need the public’s help to survive and thrive, in the face of plastic pollution, sewage and the impacts of climate change.

London’s rivers are often peaceful, natural places, where we can escape city life. They are havens where we can relax by the water, watch swans nesting or if we’re lucky, spot a flash of blue as one of Britain’s most beautiful birds, a kingfisher, speeds across the water.

So what are you waiting for? Take a look at our fantastic range of activities and book your place at one today!

If you can’t wait, whet your appetite by reading case studies about 23 restoration projects which include Ladywell Fields, giving you a world of nature to explore at places that have been rewilded in recent years.

London Rivers Week is sponsored  by Thames Water. Read more about the groups behind the organisation of London Rivers Week.

 

 

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River Wade with Booking.com

18 Booking dot com group with rubbish

A team from Booking.com with rubbish found in the Quaggy

As part of the 3 Rivers Clean Up a team from Booking.com came to help clean the River Quaggy in Manor Park. By the end they had 10 bags of rubbish, an old typewriter and a chair. Luckily we didn’t find that much Himalayan balsam, but it is still quite early in the year, so another river wade will be due! If you would like to take part in an event, please check out the 3 Rivers Clean Up blog for dates that sessions will be running.

19 Chair and typewriter

Lewisham’s new Office!

A big thanks to the team from Booking.com and to all the volunteers that will be joining us over the next 3 weeks. Your help is invaluable and Lewisham’s rivers will be better for you.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

19 Chair and typewriter


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3 Rivers Clean Up 2108

5 Natures Gym group

Ladywell Fields

 

The first 3 Rivers Clean Up planning session will be taking place later this week. We hope that by the end o it we will have confirmed the dates for this year’s festival. We hope that will be able to overlap with London Rivers Week. This will be the 10th year that we have been running this project so look our for some fun anniversary events and celebrations.

The 3RiversCleanUp is a three-week long intensive annual volunteer campaign to improve the rivers Ravensbourne, Pool and Quaggy in South East London.

Take your family, your friends or just yourself on an urban wilderness adventure this summer and discover the rivers and the nature they support.  Join others in removing harmful rubbish and invasive plant species so as to improve the habitats for both flowers and animals. Learn about nature, about the quality of water and why it’s important and also join in with other associated events such as wildlife habitat management, pond dipping and nature walks, most of which will be suitable for all ages. All events are FREE.

If you would like to get involved have a look at the events calendar over the coming months to find out details of event locations and contact details of the event organisers.  Events will start to be populated once dates have been finalised. If you would like a bespoke event for your company, please free to contact us and we will do our best to arrange something.

Events are free but some require pre-booking. If there is heavy rain an event may be cancelled at short notice due to the risk of flash flooding.  Please check with the event organiser if the weather is bad.


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Come on an Outfall Safari and help us raise awareness about river pollution!

Outfall Safari

Following the successful first year running the Riverfly monitoring scheme on the Ravensbourne Catchment, we’re offering you another opportunity to help identify pollution hotspots and raise public awareness around drainage misconnections that can harm our rivers.

The waterways of the Ravensbourne, Quaggy and Pool join the Thames at Deptford and like all London’s rivers, they can be polluted by chemicals from detergents and by sewage, due to misconnected plumbing.  Pipes that lead into surface water drains, rather than into sewers, bring these pollutants into our rivers.

While Thames Water and the Environment Agency monitor the river catchment and respond to pollution incidents, it is very hard to create a detailed map of all the troublesome outfalls that have, so far, remained under the radar. An Outfall Safari is the answer. 

Designed to be undertaken by local volunteers, an Outfall Safari requires no expertise beyond simple data collection, which is covered in the bespoke training in September, and keenness to take walks alongside our rivers (and occasionally in them). 

This is a short-term commitment: it will be run over a period of around one month (October 2017) and relies on lots of small teams of volunteers each doing as much or as little as they want.  One team member will record the observations of the group using a simple mobile app and the uploaded data collected by all the teams will create a detailed picture of the current state of the catchment.

 Our Outfall Safari training will be on Wednesday 27th September 2017, from 10-12 noon.  Our trainer is Joe Pecorelli of the Zoological Society of London.  Flyer attached with full details – training is of course free.

An Outfall Safari gathers valuable information.  Data from the app is mapped and passed on the Environment Agency and Thames Water.  And any severe pollution revealed can be investigated immediately by these agencies.  It is a proven method of checking on London’s rivers, already tested on the rivers Crane, Hogsmill and Dollis Brook, and about to be used on the river Pinn.  It relies fully on Citizen Scientists!

Please contact Lawrence for more information or if you are keen to take part.


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July – September 2017 Rivers and People Programme is now available

ACT UK- Sony Pictures Entertainment helping out at the 3 Rivers Clean Up in Manor Park

After a busy Summer of events, a huge amount of work was achieved by all the volunteers that came out and did their bit for Lewisham’s rivers. There is always work to do though, so if you missed out or enjoyed yourself so much that you’d like to do more, please have a look at the new Rivers and People programme to see if you can help. You’d be very welcome!

 


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New Nature’s Gym Programme now available

Folkestone Gardens

The April-June 2017 Nature’s programme is now available.  There are plenty of exciting projects over the next few months, including the 3 Rivers Clean Up.  As always, booking is essential for these sessions. If you are new to Nature’s Gym, take a look through our FAQ and How to Get Involved pages for more information.  If there is anything that you are still unsure of, please feel free to email us any questions.