Esk Valley Trust and Riverfly join forces

The Esk Valley Trust has announced a new collaboration with local science group ‘Riverfly on the Esk’, which is now part of the Trust.

Friday, 17th September 2021, 6:00 am
The Riverfly group carrying out sampling work at the Esk.

For 20 years, The Esk Valley Trust has worked to stimulate public interest and care for the beauty, history and character of the valleys of the North and South Esk rivers. It is also working to complete a designated ‘North Esk Way’ for walking from source to sea, as well as owning and managing the Hewan Wood, south of Loanhead.

The Trust recently hosted an online talk about the increased pollution of the Esk rivers from both sewage and mine water, with presentations from both SEPA and the Coal Authority on their plans.

The Riverfly on the Esk citizen science group has been active since July 2019 and forms part of a wider network of volunteer groups across the UK, trained by the Riverfly Partnership, to monitor the health of our rivers.

Riverfly volunteers hard at work at the Esk.

John Oldham, chairman of The Esk Valley Trust said: “We are delighted to be collaborating with the ‘Riverfly on the Esk’ group and hope that this will strengthen our commitment to protect and enhance both River Esks.

"At a time when there is growing concern about the impact of pollution on the health of our rivers this new project could not be more timely.

"More than ever, we need to protect and value these green corridors through our region, and I hope more people can become involved with this effort.”

Laura Goble from Riverfly on the Esk said: “This is a very positive step for our project and we very much look forward to continuing our journey together.

The Riverfly volunteers working on the Esk.

"Our river is a treasured natural resource that needs our support to increase its resilience in our changing climate. Working together we can achieve this aim.”

The Riverfly on the Esk group’s contribution to our understanding of the local river has been recognised by the Scottish Environmental Protection Agency (SEPA) as a valuable resource.

They will be working together, alongside the Esk Valley Trust, to help protect and deepen understanding of the ecology and environmental pressures on the River Esk.

Their efforts were recognised recently at the World Water Day Conference and in an article in the National Forum for Biological Recording.

The group have a huge amount of support from other groups including the Musselburgh District Angling Association (MDAA, the local angling association) as well as Buglife, Newbattle Abbey College, Eskbank and Newbattle Community Council (ENCC), the Riverfly Partnership and an army of local volunteers.

The Esk Valley Trust became a Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation (SCIO) in 2019. Its website is www.eskvalleytrust.org.

You can follow Riverfly on the Esk’s on Facebook at: www.facebook.com/riverflyontheesk/ and Twitter: @on_esk, and their email address is [email protected]

The Riverfly Partnership is a national organisation working across the UK. Its website is www.riverflies.org/.