Saturday, 13 December 2008

Grayling Stocking - 11th December

On Thursday 11th December we stocked 2 stretches of the river Erewash with Grayling donated by the EA to the River Erewash Foundation.We have stocked through Broxtowe Borough Councils stretch to Long Eaton and the foundation is very grateful to Broxtowe Council for accepting our foundation and opening their arms to our conservation aims through their land. Moving on over the Toton sidings (Railway lines) we carried on stocking through Erewash Borough Council up from long Eaton towards Sandiacre and luckily the EA own this land (thank God) as Erewash Borough Council have seemed unhelpful to this point, though I'm glad to report their lack of co operation didn't prevent the foundation doubling its length of river to monitor the tiny graylings progress, in the coming years.Watch out for press releases and please notify on this thread should you spot any.

Our next management committee meeting will be at the Red Lion, Sandiacre on Monday 12th January at 7.30pm. Anyone wishing to become involved in conservation works and become active/members for £10 membership fee should attend this meeting. Membership forms can be downloaded by e-mailing the secretary at

The Foundation can now be contacted at:

Friday, 14 November 2008

The launch of the River Erewash Foundation.

The River Erewash Foundation are pleased to announce that it's inaugural meeting will be taking place on Monday 1st December at 7-30pm in the Red Lion Pub, Derby Rd, Sandiacre, Nottingham, Nottinghamshire, NG10 5HW.All those who are interested are welcome to attend, membership will be available on the night. Membership to those unable to attend will be available after the meeting.The aims and objects of the River Erewash Foundation are:• Restore and conserve the biodiversity of the River Erewash and it’s tributaries.• Achieve this through regular monitoring, regular meetings, and a programme of conservation management. The association will work with the local community to do this, as well as local landowners and relevant organisations.• Restore the River Erewash to it’s historical biodiversity.The Foundation has the support and backing of the following organisations:Broxtowe Borough Council,Erewash Borough Council,The Wild Trout Trust,Environment Agency,The Grayling Society,Derbyshire Wildlife Trust,Friends of Toton Fields.The Foundation is moving fast, and there is already a lot planned to happen over the next few months.

Sunday, 26 October 2008

Carry on up the Nutt Brook

Earlier this week myself and Trugg (and his faithful hounds) took a walk alongside a potential spawning tributary of the Erewash; the Nutt Brook.

The Nutt brook flows above ground for about 1/4 mile before it disappears underground to reappear besides the derelict wastegrounds around the Stanton ironweeks. The brook has obviously been engineered by the hand of man in recent years, but withstanding this, has greatpotential as an area for trout to carve out their redds and spawn; in short an ideal nursery ground for the wild trout of the Erewash. There is a lot of work to do to achieve this, but this is achieveable.
Trugg has already asked for ideas on what we should do on a couple of obstructions in the brook. But it doesn't look too bad as is. I spotted a chub just upstream of the 2nd blockage Mick took a photograph of. Typically I soon as I mentioned the chub to Mick, it hid under some debris and Mick couldn't see it at all!
Whilst walking the brook some rises where also spotted, where these the rises of trout?
Rumours have been heard of trout from the Nutt brook, but as yet these rumours have yet to be confirmed. Do any of you have photos that could prove the existance of trout in the Nutt brook, or even the Erewash?
There is more to come from the Erewash Restoration project, watch this blog, exciting times are ahead!

Monday, 22 September 2008

WTT Visit - August 19th 2008

The project was recently visited on the 19th of August by Tim Jacklin and Paul Gaskell of the Wild Trout Trust for advisory visit. Mick and Del of the project accompanied them along the project's stretch of the Erewash and Nutt brook.

The WTT report can be viewed at:

The report is very encouraging, and as the conclusions states:

1.0 Conclusion
This section of the River Erewash has habitat which is capable of supporting adult trout. Their absence is probably because of the following factors:
· intermittent water quality problems (as described in section 2.0)
· limited trout spawning habitat in the form of suitable gravel riffles because of the low gradient of the river, past river engineering works, and the flashy runoff regime
If trout populations could be found within the wider catchment and actions targeted at improving and extending these populations, then it may be possible to return wild trout to this section of the Erewash.

In short, with the projects's continued hard work and efforts the Erewash once again will be a river with it's own self sustaining wild trout population.

River Erewash Flood video

Whilst surfing through the net I came across a short video on You Tube featuring a flooded River Erewash, I can only presume it was filmed on the upper reaches near Pinxton, unless of course you know better!

Sunday, 31 August 2008

The upper reaches of the Erewash

Jonnyboy from the Flyfishing forum visited the upper reaches of the Erewash this weekend.

A location near Jacksdale was visited, the river here looks fabulous averaging between 6 and 8 foot in width. The gravel bottom looks sparkling, possible area for spawning trout to make their redds.

The plant growth along the margins looks healthy, apart from the Himalayan Balsam, although this will be trimmed on work parties on the project's stretch.

Chub and perch were spotted in this stretch, along with what looked like a sizeable rudd!

A second location was visited between Ilkeston and Cotmanhay. The river here is made up of shallow gravel runs, and deeper pools.

Water voles have been spotted here swimming across the river, this will ceratinly be of interest to the Derbyshire Wildlife Trust who are supporting the project in many ways.

Thursday, 14 August 2008

Sunday 3rd August

On Sunday 3rd August a fish-in was held on our stretch of the Erewash pending the Wild Trout Trust visit later on in the month. Members turned up armed with fly and coarse fishing tackle. The group's stretch was walked, the hard work done by Mick and others was evident. Where once the river was full of rubbish, there was now prolific plant growth, clean gravel and more importantly fish. Pike, chub and roach were all seen.

I didn't catch any fish on the fly, but fish were caught on the humble maggot trotted by Mick. Fishing a swim near the sewage works, Mick caught a chub first cast followed quickly by more, roach were caught as well. Rumours are abounding locally of up 10 trout caught at a time during impromptu matches on the river, these as yet have not been substantiated by any firm evidence.

Tuesday, 24 June 2008

The Project has visitors!

Mr Warren Slaney recently visited the Erewash........

We’ve all done it. Driving down the motorway we see a bridge coming up in the distance. Perhaps it’s a river bridge…and a sign confirms its name. As you cross over it you sit up in your seat and flash glances while keeping your eyes on the road in front as your family rolls its eyes in unison. Between Junctions 25 and 26 on the M1on the border between Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire is a bridge, a sign and a river called the Erewash. The bit you we see as you speed past has been fitted into a straightjacket by the Civil Engineers but further upstream and down this little river now has friends. Dennis has very kindly offered to show me around and one Sunday morning in June we found ourselves walking down a busy road on the way to the river. Breaking left we are immediately in a flood plane with the river up in front defined as a twisting double row of willow, poplar and thorn. Steep banks and a meandering channel would have my Geography teacher ticking the lower river box and she would be right. This is a coarse fish zone and to confirm this my guide points out half a dozen chub who see us high up on the bank and turn their black tails downstream. What is interesting is that the group who now look after this river are all fly fishermen with a wish to one day see trout amongst the coarse fish. The gleaming beds of ranunculus are interspersed with ribbon weed and there isn’t too much algae so there is hope.Around the corner comes a thick set spaniel followed by a beagle followed by Mick. We shake hands and my questions pour out; I want to know more. Mick does his best to answer me by drawing on the hours, months and years of walking this stretch. If this group had titles Mick’s would be a do’er. He proudly explains what it used to be like, before all the hard work started and shows me the results of their labour. From what I gather the river here and there was blocked almost completely by urban rubbish in the form of barrels, pallets; well you name it. Now lets get one thing straight, this isn’t chalk stream but it does have advantages. The local EA, once they realised that these men were serious, came and tested the water because the top boundary is defined by a sewage farm. The local Wildlife Trust is on board and they are coming to see how they can help. When someone takes the trouble to do something quite often their enthusiasm is infectious.A female sanitary product hangs from a branch well up in a riverside tree telling me use the high water to dump the ‘rags’ they are paid and trusted to dispose of properly. I’m not allowed to muse for long as someone spots a pink pelvic fin that’s attached to a golden flank, with a forked tail and head with whiskers. Three more barbel hang below a submerged willow tree leading us to discuss large woody debris and cover. The group have control of a tributary and a piece of upper river with a history of trout so this could be a good mixed fishery to pay back the hard work dished out. One thing is for sure these men aren’t ‘fly-by-nights’ with a short term aim of piling in the stock browns, they want to do it right, to build from the bottom, up. They have the long term health of the river in mind. As we walk back to the car, under the M1 with its wonderful graffiti on the walls, it occurs to me that there must be a hundreds of miles of river like this with thousands of fishermen just waiting to get stuck in. The Erewash Restoration Project could be a blueprint for maximising the potential of any river, anywhere, rather than turned their backs and saying it can’t be done. No pressure Lads!One thing is for sure, if I was a small brown trout, a barbel, chub, perch or water vole I would be healthier and better off thanks to this group.

Wednesday, 18 June 2008


If you have any photographs relevant to the Erewash and the project I would be interested in hearing from you. I am also interested in documentation from the past concerning the river and it's fisheries.

Nutt Brook

The Nutt Brook flows into river at the project's stretch. The Nutt Brook flows for 500 metres alongside the Erewash until it disappears from view. It suffers at them moment from shading for most of it's length. It has a firm gravel bottom, and has reasonable plant growth where visible. The brook would appear at this stage to offer suitable gravel area from spawing Brown Trout to make their redds, but this would have to be surveyed further.

The brook is rumoured to hold a small population of Brown Trout, with reports of anglers catching them from time to time. The brook is only fished on occasion. Any photos of fish caught from the brook would be very welcomed, and would help substantiate reports of trout from the brook.

I for one believe that the Nutt Brook would make an excellent trout fishing, albeit a challenging water requiring a stealthy approach. Extensive work is still needed to make this dream a reality.

Kick Sampling

Mick and Del carried out an Invertebrate sample on the river using the kick sampling technique. A variety of invertebrates (trout food) were discovered. It's encouraging to see the river does support a healthy population of invertebrates, it would be interesting to carry out more systematic sampling of the river at different locations along the restoration stretch.

Work in progress

Work has begun in earnest on the river. A number of working parties have taken place. The depth at various different locations has been determined. LWD (large wood debris) has been removed. Working parties have been meeting at the river near Moorbridge lane on Wednesday evenings and Sunday mornings.
The Environment Agency have offered their support to the project following a visit to the River on the 27th February.
A copy of their letter is below:
River Erewash Trout Restoration Scheme - Following the site meeting held on the 27.02.08 attended by the Environment Agency Fisheries Department and representatives from the River Erewash Trout Restoration Scheme, I am writing to offer the Environment Agency’s technical assistance in delivering this project.The intention of this scheme is to try to restore a self sustaining population of brown trout (Salmo trutta) to a stretch of the Erewash around Trowell. Having visited the site to gain an idea as to the physical characteristics of the river in this area and the influences on this stretch, a number of short term objectives were agreed.Firstly we need to look at the water quality within this stretch because as to my knowledge, there are at least three major sewage works within or upstream of the stretch. Whether the quality of water discharged from the works is good enough to sustain trout is the initial concern. I would always be wary that although the quality at the time of sampling may be suitable, pollution events caused by these works are always a possibility. This stretch was subject to a pollution caused by Langley Mill works during October 2007 during which, large numbers of coarse fish were killed. Although records show that these events aren’t of annual occurrence, it does highlight the vulnerability of the river.I would hope to undertake general water quality analysis in the near future. If the results of the sampling indicate that the site is able to sustain trout, further investigations can proceed.If water quality analysis conforms to the standards for trout then we can assist the restoration group with mapping of the physical habitat on the stretch and following this, areas of suitable habitat can be surveyed for the presence of trout.You have already approached a number of organisations to put forward your intentions including The Wild Trout Trust. It would also be beneficial to inform the Trent Rivers Trust as they may offer further technical advice.I shall be in contact when I am able to secure a date for water quality analysis and further to that, possible habitat and fish surveys.
This is a positive step for the the project. The Wild Trout Trust have also offered their support, and look set to fund an Advisory visit.

Thursday, 14 February 2008

Sunday 10th February

On Sunday 10th February 8 interested parties met for a river walk to determine a stretch of the Erewash suitable for the project. The river was walked from Trowell to Sandiacre. The river was slightly up and coloured, but very encouraging none the less. No fish were seen, but the river appeared to be an excellent habitat for them.

A section of river in Trowell has been selected as a possible site for restoration work, this was chosen for it's meandering nature, over hanging tree shade, and good flow. The river here is a mixture of riffles, pools, and glides. Access is easy via public footpaths from the nearby main road. There are however 2 negative points: the close proximity of the M1, which is good reminder of the urban nature of the river, the second being the neighbouring water treatment works which discharges "clean" water into the Erewash. A plus point is that the Nut Brook flows into the Erewash here, and is known to contain a small population of Brown Trout. Talks have begun with the landowner for access to the river, talks have also begun with the Environment Agency about the cleanliness of the river, and for future plans about the project. The Wild Trout Trust have also been approached about an Advisory Visit, and a possible grant towards the project.

A group has been formed to coordinate the restoration, at this stage it has been called "The Erewash Fly Fishers".

Thursday, 24 January 2008

The River Erewash Restoration Project

The River Erewash Restoration Project was established in January 2008. The long term aim of the project is to restore the River Erewash as a wild trout stream. The Erewash has been know to hold a stock of wild trout in the past. The trout fishing rights in the 19th century were owned by the Rev. Joseph Jackson of Cloud House in Sandiacre, and were later willed to Dame Borlace Warren of Stapleford Hall. There have been reports and rumours of trout being caught from the Erewash in recent years.