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River Welland clean up hailed a success

Volunteers helped clean up the River Welland (4426150)
Volunteers helped clean up the River Welland (4426150)

A successful clean up of the Town Meadows river banks along the Welland and Mill Stream took place on Thursday, September 20.

The event, which was organised by the Welland Rivers Trust and Stamford Town Council, was meant to take place from 9am to 5pm but ended earlier due to the weather.

Geoff Gilfillan, a project officer for the Welland Rivers Trust, said the clean up had gone “really well”. “We had about 15 volunteers turn up and while it threatened to rain it fortunately never did so we were able to get quite a bit done,” he said.

Geoff said they had used a boat which allowed for access to difficult to reach areas while other volunteers walked along the river bank picking up litter and also removing invasive Himalayan balsam from the banks of the Welland.

“Removing the Himalayan balsam allows for native species to grow and strengthen the river banks as winter comes,” he said.

River Welland clean-up (4392565)
River Welland clean-up (4392565)

Geoff said they had removed a “significant” amount of litter and Himalayan balsam, which filled around 20 to 30 bags.

“This is something we’d like to do monthly and we’ll look to hold similar events on weekends when more people can get involved,” he said. “We’ve only just started so it’s something we’ll be learning from.”

Stamford Town Council clerk Patricia Stuart-Mogg said the council wanted to thank all the volunteers who joined in.

“The team worked diligently on the river and along its banks collecting litter and removing the invasive Himalayan balsam from the Welland’s banks,” she said. “These plants out-compete our native species and cause significant river erosion following their annual winter die-back.

“The efforts of the volunteers have made a great contribution to the river environment and will benefit the waterways downstream.

“Appreciation also goes to Welland Rivers Trust and SKDC for providing equipment and removing the bags of rubbish.”

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