Catchment Management

The Catchment Based Approach

Throughout England, Catchment Partnerships are coming together to collectively agree on the priorities for the local water environment. Many are developing, in partnership, realistic catchment action plans which will guide the work of the partnerships and also help to inform larger-scale strategic River Basin Management plans that the Environment Agency is putting in place for each of the 11 River Basins Districts in England & Wales. These River Basin Management Plans will facilitate UK reporting to Europe on its progress in delivering WFD improvements

The Catchment Based Approach is about much more than just complying with the Water Framework Directive. It allows local communities, businesses, organisations and other stakeholders to come together to undertake actions or develop projects which incorporate local priorities such as flood risk management, fisheries and biodiversity.

The ‘Catchment Based Approach’ will see issues being identified and tackled at a much more local level, giving key stakeholders and local communities the opportunity to get involved.

Test & Itchen Catchment Partnership

Within the Test and Itchen Catchment there is a strong history of collaborative working to take action for our rivers and the wider habitats they support. Many of the organisations active in the catchment have been involved in extensive programmes of habitat management, restoration and awareness raising and have championed the importance of taking a catchment based approach (CaBA) to resolve issues facing our rivers and wetlands. The CaBA partnership formally came to together in 2012, building upon existing working relationships and partnership projects such as the Itchen Navigation Project, Winnall Moors Restoration, the Bourne Rivulet and Upper Itchen Initiatives. Hosted by the Wessex Chalk Stream & Rivers Trust and the Hampshire & Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust, the partnership brings together the Environment Agency, Natural England, Catchment Sensitive Farming, Hampshire County Council, South Downs National Park Authority, National Farmers Union, the Watercress Growers Association, and Southern Water.

The partnership are committed to working together to achieve better outcomes for the water environment, in line with a vision for high water quality and sustainable flows, abundant wildlife, and functioning and resilient ecosystems.

The Core Group members will steer the work of the Partnership Officers on behalf of all of the wider stakeholders, who are kept informed and involved via workshops, stakeholder events, a newsletter and developing website, and opportunities to become involved in the development and implementation of projects which help to deliver the partnership’s vision. A Catchment Action Plan has been produced to guide this process, bringing together issues identified by data and evidence, existing plans and strategies, and stakeholder input, and will be a live plan which evolves as the work of the partnership develops. A summary is available at

If you are interested in getting involved or would like to find out more, please do not hesitate to contact the Catchment Officer, Andrew Blincow at

Hampshire Avon Catchment Partnership

The River Avon and its tributaries have been shaped and influenced by a long history of human use. It’s many and diverse uses continue to influence management of the Avon and are integral to the landscape, heritage, social and economic value of the river. It is one of the most important river systems in the UK, supporting internationally and nationally important habitats and species including many records of nationally rare and scarce species and those listed as priority protected species.

But it’s not all good news. Like all rivers the Avon and its streams and tributaries are under increasing pressure. Water abstraction, intensive agriculture, sewage and other effluents, invasive species and sometimes just neglect and ignorance have all taken their toll.

The Hampshire Avon Catchment Partnership is working to bring a wide range of partners together across the catchment to try to achieve the vision of healthy water bodies within the Hampshire Avon catchment which are valued and nurtured by residents, businesses and the wider community. A lot of work, often as a response to the EU Water Framework Directive, is already being done to try to improve water quality and wildlife habitats in and around the river. A Catchment Management Plan is in the process of being created by the partnership and will involve a number of workshops asking local people what they feel are the problems affecting rivers and streams in the catchments and how to solve these issues. The Plan sets out what some of the issues are, what is already happening and what more could be done. This is just the start of a process to involve individuals, communities, organisations, companies, farmers and landowners in working together to improve our rivers.

Through collaborative working our aim is to ensure that the Hampshire Avon exhibits:

  • Naturally functioning flows
  • High water quality
  • Sustainable and abundant wildlife
  • Fully functioning ecosystems linking rivers with their valleys
  • Resilience to climate change and future socio-economic pressures

If you are interested in getting involved or would like to find out more, please do not hesitate to contact the Catchment Officer, Liam Reynolds at or go to

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