We had a corporate day in September with staff from the Leeds office of the Environment Agency working with Calder Future and the Calder Valley Clean-up Team in Sowerby Bridge. This is where the River Calder meets the River Ryburn, and it is a site that Calder Future has maintained in the past with the help of the Halifax Canoe Club – litter-picking and clearing debris from the river. Being at the confluence of the two rivers, there has been flooding at this point before but it is also one place in Calderdale where people can access the river frontage.

Removing a tree lodged in the weir at Sowerby Bridge

We concentrated on removing woody debris from the two rivers, and carried out some vegetation management and a quick litter sweep. Through getting rid of overhanging branches and large pieces of debris we hope to reduce the risk of flooding incidents in the future where a build-up of detritus can restrict the water flow. By working in the centre of Sowerby Bridge the general public will be able to see the results of our efforts, and it enabled the EA staff to have a day out of their office, using public transport as well.

The EA staff posing for a group photo at the end of the task
Partnership action at Sowerby Bridge