The start of 2013 has seen no let-up in the Tyne Catchment project.
After a short Christmas break it’s full steam ahead once again. Having produced our Catchment Plan in time for Defra’s end of 2012 deadline, we now have until mid April (when the money runs out) to get the Catchment Plan projects off the ground.
So far I have had some really useful meetings with potential project deliverers (local authorities, wildlife trusts, the Environment Agency), with plenty more planned for the next month or so. Everyone I have spoken with has shown real enthusiasm for developing the projects into the next phase – identifying deliverers and bringing them together to plan the next stages, putting more detail around the project scope, identifying potential funders and putting together appropriate bids for funds.
We are also developing some more engagement tools. We are writing a much shorter and simpler version of the Catchment Plan targeted at communities and individuals. This will include information about why it is important to look after our rivers, and simple actions that everyone can take. We hope that this document will be useable by a wide variety of organisations working with communities in the Tyne catchment, and will have a lifespan well beyond this project.
We are also hoping to develop an interactive map of the catchment which we hope will be a great source of information for all those interested in the Tyne’s rivers. It will be web-based, probably through this website. At the moment we are finding out what will work best – it needs to be simple to use and accessible to those with slow broadband.
Watch this space for further developments!
(Susan Mackirdy, Project Manager)