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Contribute to our #TogetherForRivers campaign – take the survey now!

Rebecca Duncan


Take our Recreational River Use Survey now and help to make rivers safer for all.

This survey is part of our Together For Rivers campaign, which aims to introduce designated bathing water status in UK rivers. There are currently no bathing water standards in UK rivers, meaning that popular recreational spots for swimming, padding and fishing could be severely polluted. The introduction of these standards would ensure that the waters are held to higher standards of cleanliness and protect river users from dangerous levels of pollution. Recent data accumulated by The Rivers Trust and published by the Guardian showed that water firms discharged raw sewage into England’s rivers 200,000 times in 2019. This is a particularly alarming statistic in the context of the coronavirus lockdown, as many of us have turned to our local green and blue spaces to keep active and look after our wellbeing.

Attention to the safety and quality of water in popular river spots is steadily growing.

An application by Ilkley Clean River Group for a section of the River Wharfe to be a designated bathing area is aewaiting a response from the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs and Conservative MP Philip Dunne recently introduced a private membeers’ bill to change the law and stop water companies from releasing raw sewage into rivers. As restrictions on foreign travel, leisure centre closures, and an increased focus on mental and physical wellbeing have driven people towards their local green and blue spaces, we need to build a strong evidence base to demonstrate the importance of recreational river use, and thus the need to monitor the safety of our waterways. By filling out the short survey, you can help us to gather data on how often people use rivers for recreational purposes and what activities they pursue, as well as how people’s perceptions of water quality might inform their habits.

Take the survey now to have your say.

Come together, for rivers.

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