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Rivers Action 12-12-20

Updated: Dec 20, 2020

Limited once again by current restrictions, Planet Shaftesbury and XR supporters participated in a cross-country action on the degraded state of UK rivers last Saturday.

A recent Environment Agency report on the pollution status of UK rivers reveals that only 14% of our waterways is up to what it deems a good ecological standard. As a local survey earlier this year by Adrian Newton has highlighted, much of the Stour's catchment area is considered ‘bad’ by the EA, and the river itself is deteriorating. Sewage discharges and agricultural run-off are considered the main causes.

At Sturminster Mill, shortly after 2pm, two of our small band of red rebels appeared to cross the footbridge as ‘river wraiths’, lamenting the condition of the water, accompanied by banner bearers and the eerie sound of a water-clarinet, Images and video are to be shared more widely (see below). The event certainly made an impression on passing kayakers.

Our thanks to Phyllis Wolff for the day's bespoke banner, to Karen Wimhurst for the inspiring music, heard above the sound of rushing water and Christina Strickland for the photos shown here.

Stop Press! Today, Sunday 20th Dec, there is a piece about the event on This is Alfred (at ), featuring the 'Dimbleby-esque' Richard Ecclestone narrating, and also interviewing Karen along with one of the passing kayakers. You too can hear the sound of the water-clarinet! Not to be missed!

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