Shape river plan

Seals bask on the banks of the River Tees at  the Seal Sands Teesmouth National Nature Reserve.
Seals bask on the banks of the River Tees at the Seal Sands Teesmouth National Nature Reserve.

ENVIRONMENT agencies are inviting people in Greatham to attend an upcoming meeting as part of a project to improve local waterways for people and wildlife.

Groundwork North East, the Tees Rivers Trust and Environment Agency are working together to create a Tees Catchment Plan.

It will look at how rivers are managed and how together with residents they can improve rivers for the public and wildlife.

A host of events have been planned across the region to encourage public participation in the plan.

One will be held at Greatham Community Centre, on Monday, March 18, between 6.30pm and 8.30pm.

Greatham beck, which is a haven and wildlife corridor for many species, is set to be included in the plan.

Brian Walker, chairman of Greatham Parish Council, said: “The meeting is to inform various communities in the area and Greatham is recognised to be central to their locality.

“Greatham beck is an important feature of the village, footpaths run almost all the way along it.

“I hope as many people as possible attend the meeting to find out how Greatham features in their plans.”

The Tees Catchment Plan will inform development of the rivers and becks throughout the area in the future.

Greatham beck is said to provide food and shelter for a variety of wildlife including woodpecker, kingfisher and tawny owls.

A spokesman for the groups said: “A vital element of the plan is to understand local communities’ views on and memories of their particular stretch of watercourse and the surrounding area, what they think works well, what can be improved and ideas and aspirations for the future.”

Organisers say the meetings will be informative and fun, with a series of workshop activities planned at each one.

Refreshments will be provided and there will be the chance to win river-related prizes.