Changing of the Guard at Lynchmere Society
Over 50 members of the Lynchmere Society at their AGM meeting in Haslemere last Friday paid tribute to retiring Chair, Lady Judy Rous, and heard a fascinating talk from National Trust Ranger Dave Elliott on the challenges and potential solutions for our local waterways and wetlands.
The Society manages the fifth largest area of heathland in West Sussex. A habitat as rare as rainforest.
Dr Christopher Tibbs, on behalf of all, thanked Lady Rous through an adapted libretto of Gilbert and Sullivan’s Pirates of Penzance:
The bad news was the damage being done by Southern and Thames Water Boards in spilling raw sewage, so often outside storm period, stimulating the growth of algae which uses up the oxygen causing the fish to die as well as killing native water plants.
He urged everyone who sees solid raw sewage in our rivers to report it to the Environment Agency.
The good news is the reintroduction of water voles, beavers, otters and migrating eels in our rivers. He also explained the work the National Trust were doing at Woolbeding to restore the health of the river and its flood plain which would enable species recovery.