Environment Agency restock the polluted River Cut

December 16, 2021 at 1:48 pm

Following recent pollution events on the River Cut, the Environment Agency were welcomed by members of the local Braybrooke Nature and Fishing Club, when a mixture of dace, roach and chub were introduced to the small Berkshire river to top up previous stocking visits.

Watched by an interested dog, Nick, from the Environment Agency’s Calverton Fish Farm in Nottinghamshire, made his first delivery of the day with 600 fish stocked into the Bracknell river.

One of the club members asked me if the club had paid for the fish, but I reminded him that Fishing License revenue is ploughed back into benefits for all anglers, including upkeep of the fish farm and the supply free fish to clubs. Laurence Hook the Environment Agency coordinator for the day, has history on the Cut, having helped to install flow improvement berms a few winters ago, standing up to his waist in freezing water.

Job done, Nick and Laurence were off to their next delivery, this time to the Abbey River at Chertsey, a small backwater of the Thames belonging to Runnymede AA. Final visit of the day was back to Berkshire and the village of Eton Wick, where the Thames Valley AA control the Roundmoor Ditch, which flows into the Thames a mile away.

Sad to say, moments after the Environment Agency had driven off from the River Cut, polluted water could be seen flowing from one of the outflow culverts, that pass beneath the Bracknell town, going over the weir into the clean natural river.

These pollution spills are a regular occurrence on this small river, the result of unthinking people tipping unwanted liquids down the drains. Out of sight out of mind. Most of the time that is where it ends, being dissolved in the river, but sometimes fish and other wildlife are the innocent victims, causing death.