Radio 4 at the Wandle!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Ok, it was in Wimbledon, but on the Today programme this morning there was a report about the Angling Trust that came from the banks of the Wandle. The Angling Trust has evidently been set up to represent all UK anglers (there are 4 million we were told, which is no small fry brrrching!) and to lobby effectively for better waterway management and conversation which can only be a good thing. I’ve known birders in the past that have thought that anglers are a rotten lot, but personally I have no beef with them other than discarded line. They are not that different from birders in their love of the outdoors and quiet places and an ability to stay out in the wet and cold just in case something turns up… Some of them are know a fair bit about birds – was there not a Yellow somethinged Albatross that an angler brought to the attention of birders in Lincolnshire last year?
The Angling Trust have a website -

Anyhow, the report was reasonably accurate. It detailed that this ‘little chalk stream’ was one of the hardest working rivers in the country at one point as there were 90 mills using the power and that in the sixties it was little more than a sewer. The reporter kindly noted that in the river there were plastic bags and a washing machine, so I have no doubt that it was the Wandle! I reckon that the plastic bags will make it down stream to me, but given that washing machines have a concrete base, I doubt if that will float down to my patch. However at the time of the broadcast, it was still dark and it was bloody foggy out there this morning, so this may all have been journalistic license.

Basically it’s more good news. The Angling Trust, The London Rivers Action Plan – if everyone continues like this there is hope for this little chalk stream yet.

The picture is of the Wandle, but taken last summer. Things are a little less verdant at the moment…


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