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Water Way to Spend the Weekend

Published Wednesday, 03 July 2013

On Saturday the Friends of Albany Park joined with local volunteers and The Outdoor Pursuits Scheme (T.O.P.s) to clean up a section of Turkey Brook which had suffered from dumped rubbish, pollution and general neglect.

brook Enfield Council provided support for this important project by arranging for training for the Friends of Parks to be accredited water testers, and how to lead water clean ups. It also provided the equipment for the day, and disposed of all the rubbish and waste pulled from Turkey Brook.

The project has received support from Thames 21 one of the country's leading waterway charities, which works with communities to improve canals, rives, ponds and lakes for people and wildlife. It has also trained Friends of Parks groups across Enfield on how to test for phosphates and nitrates and check the pH (or acidity) level of the water in them, and also trained people on how to lead a waterway clean up themselves.

Cllr Chris Bond, Enfield Council’s Cabinet Member for Environment said “This kind of community spirit where people get together to clean up our green spaces and waterways is just what we want to see in Enfield.

“I thoroughly support this fantastic effort by the Friends of Albany Park and would urge other groups to follow this wonderful example.”

Gina Needs, the Chair of The Friends of Albany Park said “Although Turkey Brook has a vast range of wildlife living in and around it, we were disgusted to see that many people are using this beautiful waterway as a dumping ground.

“We decided to do something about it, and The Friends of Albany Park, working together with T.O.P.s and local volunteers got together to clear the Brook of rubbish. It was also useful to have Thames 21 on hand to evaluate and support on the day.  I cannot praise Thames 21 staff enough with all the training and support we have had from them for both testing and monitoring the water quality and also for empowering residents like myself to be able to carry out these clean ups ourselves.

"This event was made much easier with the support received by Thames 21 and Enfield Council, who arranged for equipment, and actually disposing of what we removed from the Brook on the day. Enfield Council also worked with Thames 21 to provide the training which enabled us to make it happen.

"Everyone involved thoroughly enjoyed themselves and we’re really keen to keep the momentum going - we are already planning the next one!  What would really be nice now is if businesses could come forward and donate some washed gravel for us to create riffles to enable the waterway to filter itself naturally and for some reed beds – that would be the icing on the cake.”

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