Nearly seventy people made their way from the Eden Valley and beyond to attend Eden Rivers Trust’s first ever Supporters’ Day at Melmerby Village Hall.
The day was billed as an opportunity to hear about the work Eden Rivers Trust has undertaken to improve and protect the rivers in the Eden catchment and re-live the highlights of some amazing projects working with communities. Those who attended were treated to some fascinating talks and the chance to see some of the trust’s work in action.
Eden Rivers Trust showed just how diverse a modern rivers trust is, talking about the varied projects they delivered, helping to create A Healthy Eden for All:
- Eden Rivers Wonder World, a major summer exhibition visited by 10,000+ people at Tulllie House Museum and Art Gallery,
- Working with over 60 farmers making water-friendly farming part of their business-as-usual,
- Removing man-made barriers so that fish can swim freely, and
- Litter Monster schools’ sessions
Rewilding expert, Derek Gow was the guest speaker, who, in a passionate and thought-provoking talk, shared his experiences and learnings, both good and bad from re-introducing species and improving wildlife habitats in the UK. He left the audience with a clear message – wildlife is in peril and we need to act now … whilst we still can.
The day also provided the opportunity to thank their supporters – partner organisations and volunteers, for all their help over the last year. This included the presentation of The Ploughlands Legacy Award to its first recipient, Andrew Dixon, for his significant contribution to the conservation of the rivers and lakes of the River Eden catchment.
In the afternoon, participants chose to either visit a conservation project site or take part in activities such as stream dipping, riverfly identification, and looking at ecosystem services mapping of the Eden catchment.
Elizabeth Radford, CEO Eden Rivers Trust said: “It was wonderful to be able to bring so many of our supporters together for the first time. They are integral to the delivery of our work and it was great to celebrate the year’s successes with them.
Derek’s impassioned and bold address inspired and challenged staff and supporters alike to think big about restoring our countryside so that it truly bursts with life.”
Thanks to Friends of the Lake District, Sainsbury’s Penrith and Asda Carlisle for their contributions to the event.
You can read more about what Eden Rivers Trust’s did in 2018 in their report, In Full Flow: Creating A Healthy Eden for All, available to download from: https://edenriverstrust.org.uk/about/in-full-flow-annual-review-2018/