Torridge River Restoration Project Success

Torridge River Restoration Project Success

As the Torridge River Restoration Project comes to a close team leader Matt Turley reflects on the incredible achievements of the project, gives thanks to everyone involved and looks forward to the future of improving rivers in northern Devon.
Ragged robin plants pink flowers beside a hedgerow

Ragged robin - a wetland wildflower species now thriving in a fen habitat on the Torridge floodplain.

It has been a pleasure working on the Torridge River Restoration Project (TRRP) and I am immensely proud of what we have managed to achieve. Special thanks must go to the landowners and volunteers that have helped us to improve this watercourse, helping to bring new life to the river and to ensure that it is more resilient to meet the challenges ahead. We have worked together with 100 landowners to stop harmful pollutants entering the river, to keep soil in the fields and not in the river and to improve the river banks to provide an important buffer zone that improves river health and gives food and shelter for wildlife.


Specifically we have: restored 19 hectares of habitat back to health; created 3.9 hectares of new wildlife rich habitat including, species rich grassland and floodplain woodland; improved more than 38km of watercourse; completed works on 40 farms to improve river quality and worked with the local community to deliver workshops and to facilitate learning and the exchange of ideas to keep the work of this project alive in the community.            

Picture of green tree guards along the bank of the Torridge river

Trees have been planted to help maintain shade, reducing the impacts of warming on rivers and to replace trees lost from Ash Dieback.

None of this work would have been possible if it had not been for the funding received from WEG (Water Environment Grant) which the Environment Agency and Natural England helped to administer. But most of all, thanks need to go to the landowners we’ve worked with, Devon Wildlife Trust volunteers and our members who enable projects such as this to happen. Devon Wildlife Trust are calling for a minimum of 30% of our land and sea to be connected and protected for nature’s recovery by 2030. Making more space for nature to become abundant once again will give our struggling wildlife the chance to recover and also restore beautiful wild places - places that store carbon and help to tackle the climate crisis. The Torridge River Restoration Project has taken us a step closer to achieving that goal. Thank you all.

We’re pleased to say that DWT have secured funding for Northern Devon Natural Solutions to take over where TRRP has left off, and we’re excited to expand this work throughout more catchments in northern Devon (and continue working in the Torridge!).