In-channel works took place in Queen Elizabeth Park along the River Witham throughout August 2022.
These exciting works involved installing in-channel features called berms which created variation and sinuosity within the river.
This sinuosity created by the careful structure and placement of the berms has helped to replicate the natural processes of the river and create variation in flow and habitat. By creating faster moving and slower moving areas of flow the river can support different in-channel species, including those critical invertebrate species at the bottom of the food chain which are so important.
In this part of the project, in Queen Elizabeth Park, berms consist of either brushwood faggots and chestnut posts or trees hinged into the river and pinned against the bank.
Hinging trees introduces much needed woody habitat into the river, creating perfect conditions for in-channel species such as invertebrates and essential refuge for fish species.
Along with the added habitat benefits of hinging trees, a mix of dappled light and shade can be created, allowing enough sunlight into the channel to ensure marginal plants can colonize while keeping optimum temperatures for fish and in-channel species.
See below the series of berms which were created along this section by local contractors Lions with volunteers from Friends of QEP, RiverCare and the local community!
The final product!
Planted up with pre-planted coir matting, colourful plants such as yellow iris and purple loosestrife have now began to establish.