#togetherforrivers campaign is launched
01st July, 2020
The Rivers Trust has launched a new campaign, Together for Rivers, with the goal of seeing Bathing Water Standards introduced to well-used rivers across the UK.
Although popular UK beaches are given designated bathing water status, which enables beach-goers to evaluate the risk of entering the water, there are currently no designated bathing waters in UK rivers (in 2019, there were 15 for lakes). The Rivers Trust is seeking to introduce bathing water standards for well-used rivers across the UK, bringing benefits to all recreational river users: from swimmers to anglers, from pets to paddlers.
“The quality of freshwater protect(s) the health and wellbeing not only of aquatic wildlife, but also the millions of people who play, swim, fish and wallow in freshwater environments every year,” Mark Lloyd, CEO of The Rivers Trust.
“It’s high time that a spotlight was shone on the quality of freshwater to protect the health and wellbeing not only of aquatic wildlife, but also the millions of people who play, swim, fish and wallow in freshwater environments every year,” says Mark Lloyd, CEO of The Rivers Trust. “We need an honest and open conversation about how to build back better sewerage infrastructure and tackling pollution from agriculture if we are to achieve this.”
Water quality issues can occur when water companies release untreated sewage directly into rivers. This can happen when sewers become blocked or overwhelmed with rainwater and, while this is often unpreventable, The Rivers Trust want to ensure we all have access to the right information to allow us to make more informed decisions about our river use.
Contributions to the campaign will go towards setting up a comprehensive national monitoring programme so The Rivers Trust can observe the scale of the problem and provide strong data to support their case. They are also asking supporters to spread the word, whether that’s with friends and family, members of your local swimming community, or by contacting your local MP.
You can find out more about the campaign on The Rivers Trust website, including direct actions you can take within your own home to help the health of your local river.
- Should swimmers seeking Bathing Water Quality Status? Read OSS Inland Access champion Imogen Radford’s take on the pros and cons (February 2020)
- Designated Bathing Waters Explained: what they are and why they matter.
- For more information on assessing the condition of your local river, please read our Is it clean? guide, which can be found in the Getting Started section of this website.
The Rivers Trust and The Outdoor Swimming Society are both supporters of the Surfers Against Sewage #EndSewagePollution campaign. Find out more about this campaign and add your name to the petition here.