Healthy riparian woodlands are a key habitat, they influence and interact
with the water and help to regulate water, pollution, temperatures and other pressures river environments face. Woodlands themselves also provide valuable habitat for many of our threatened and endangered species and more woodland cover and better connectivity within these woodlands provides an even greater benefit to wildlife.
Help to stabilise river banks
Growth breaks up compacted soil
Canopies keep rivers shaded and cool
Help to prevent sediments and nutrients entering the water
Slow the rate of water run-off rates
The Ribble Catchment has approximately 13% woodland cover which is one of the lowest in the UK and most of the catchments 1,500 miles of rivers and streams lack riparian woodland.
In order to identify the areas that would benefit most from new woodlands the Ribble Rivers Trust worked with the University of Durham to produce a bespoke model that allowed us to identify sites across the catchment where the greatest water quality, water quantity, habitat and temperature benefits could be gained.
The resulting data allowed us to identify 30 locations where the Ribble Life Together project will focus woodland creation activities; we must then visit farmers and landowners to try and establish an interest in our schemes, identify the size of woodland that is appropriate to the to the farmers and landowners needs, and large enough to reduce effective results, develop and design the woodland and finally deliver the project!