Help us to preserve one of our loveliest rivers
an essential part of our national heritage
Welcome to our web page! We are a small group of people whose concern is with the River Wye and its tributaries, from its source at Plynlimon in the Welsh hills to its mouth in the Severn Estuary at Chepstow. Read more about us here.
Heads up for our annual River Walk! It will be held on Wednesday 28th June 2017, at Whitney Court. More information will be posted once the details have been finalised. More details can be found here.
Major Patrick Darling, who was unanimously elected Chairman of the Trust at its Annual General Meeting on Thursday 17th November. Congratulations too, to Mr Malcolm Speight, who was elected Treasurer. A formal presentation was made to Mr Simon Dereham in thanks for his sterling service to the Trust as Chairman over 27 years, and thanks were also expressed to Mr Graham Hunter Blair for service almost as long, as Treasurer
After the formal business of the AGM we enjoyed a fascinating presentation by Richard R Rees on “The London Dams that never came to Wales”. This proposal, in 1894, would have seen over 400 million gallons per day taken from the Wye and Usk and their headwaters and transferred to London by way of the Thames! The estimated cost at that time was £38 million with proposals to divert 43 streams into Llangorse Lake, raising the water level of the lake by 98 feet. Many Welsh valleys would have been drowned by water which, it was proposed, would make its way to London entirely by gravity - and there would also have been 'compensating' reservoirs to make up for the depleted river waters at home.
Following the presentation the members enjoyed socialising over light refreshments.
Another successful Trust River Walk was held at The Leen, Pembridge on Tuesday, 6th September 2016, by kind permission of Tony Norman and family.
Here are some pictures of the event:
Gathering and introduction
Admiring the clean Leen
The greenest source of energy!
You can see from the stonework how deeply the river used to flood.
The rotating milking parlour and some of the 650 Producers
First sight of the Anaerobic Digester
No gutters on the barns to enable to rainwater to return to the ground unmixed with various polluting liquids about the place. Is this a new idea?
Well, here is a less recent barn just outside Bosbury, apparently constructed on similar principles...
Edina, the AD engine
The 'Mouth', the product, and the explanation
Off to supper, passing the chicken-produced AD input, and reminded that all this is part of attempts to reduce the black and yellow areas of this graph
Many thanks to Tony, and to Kate (of the WUF), and a very pleasant picnic to round off the evening.
You don't have to see dead fish to see pollution!
See this poster from the Wye and Usk Foundation to check what to look for and how to report it.
A very successful AGM was held at The Bunch of Carrots, Hampton Bishop, on Thursday 26th November
After the formal AGM business, Tony Norman gave a fascinating, if rather sobering, illustrated presentation on the project he has been leading for more than three years. This has involved many teams of dedicated volunteers who have cleared more than 111 tonnes of accumulated rubbish from over a thousand miles of river bank. This project, which was part of the activities of the Wye and Usk Foundation, has received financial contributions from the Trust over recent years. All the same, and despite our best efforts, there are already millions of tonnes of plastic floating in every ocean on the planet, and decomposing into the food of every creature that we ultimately eat. Here are a few pictures:
See also See also http://www.wyeuskfoundation.org/projects/litter-2015.php
Requiem Mass for Major General John Hopkinson, CB.
For the Eulogy delivered at John Hopkinson’s funeral, follow this link.
2015 River Walk
Another very successful annual River Walk was held on Tuesday 7th July at Kentchurch Estate. After a tour of the house there was a choice of walks: up into the Deer Park with David Lovelace, or a walk along the River Monnow with Peter Gough of the Environment Agency. Both parties enjoyed their excursions very much, and we all met up again in the grounds of Kentchurch Court to share our delicious picnics. A very successful and enjoyable evening all round! Here are a few pictures of the tour along the Monnow.
The assembled company Peter Gough of the Environment Agency Walking across the river meadows
A healthy stretch of river Progressing to the next bit Another shimmering pool
Looking across to the other side Encouraging invertebrates The old course of the river?
Where the mediaeval weir used to be
Protecting the banks from livestock
A view of Garway Hill The view from the bridge
Eleven years of Litter Pick has been completed!
On Monday 27th April 2015, the final litter pick took place at Beachley Point, Chepstow. Volunteers from the Marine Conservation Society (MCS) and Wye and Usk Foundation removed a final 34 bags from the area where the Wye enters the Severn Estuary. Afterwards, representatives from the RWPT, Angling Trust/Fish Legal (AT/FL), Keep Wales Tidy and Wye Valley Area of Outstanding Beauty joined the party for a ceremony to "hand over" the river. From now on, the Marine Conservation Society and Angling Trust/Fish Legal will continue the litter pick in the estuary and beyond.
This completes an 11-year project in which more than a thousand volunteers have removed 111 tonnes of rubbish from over a thousand miles of river bank. In addition to the unsightly litter removed from the river, it's hoped that the project will encourage people not to discard litter and to clear up any that they find. The project has also been useful to highlight the unseen pollutants entering our rivers.
Many, many thanks to Tony Norman, the WUF Trustee who has put so much of his free time into organising the clearances for the past 5 years and to the huge number of organisations and individuals who have helped and supported the project since 2004.
There is a scan of a recent Hereford Times article here.
A quick flash-back...
RWPT AGM 2014
A very successful AGM of the Trust was held on Thursday 20th November 2014 at the Bunch of Carrots, Hampton Bishop. Following the business meeting there was a presentation to Simon Dereham in grateful recognition of his 25 years' service as Chairman. Lastly, we enjoyed a presentation on Going Native and Water Voles on the Wye by Robert Denny of the Monnow Rivers Association, and there was much friendly discussion during the excellent refreshments afterwards. Here are a few pictures of the event:
The sun smiled on a very successful County Fair on 3rd August at Caradoc Court, Sellack near Ross on Wye. Members of your committee were there, manning the RWPT stall. A very pleasant day.
The 2014 River Walk
A very pleasant and successful River Walk was held at Aramstone on the evening of Tuesday 15th July. Speakers Heather Hurley and David Lovelace provided interesting information, and participants also enjoyed a fascinating tour of the racing stables given by Venetia Williams herself. Here are a few photos. More and better can be found here, courtesy of David Lovelace.
Click here to see the bulletin of the Friends Of The Hereford Bull for May 2014, with an account of the launch. There are pictures and links to more pictures and a video, as well as news of a TV programme and even an invitation!
Litter Pick latest:
The most up-to-date information is to be had at:
From Tony Norman:
Well over 100 volunteers (at different times) have been all the way
down the right bank of the Wye from Glasbury to Holme Lacy bridge.
ISAC (Irfon Special Area of Conservation) Project Report is now out, published by the Wye and Usk Foundation. For a pdf copy of the report, click here.
The Wye Valley River Festival - Latest
Saturday 3 May to Sunday 18 May 2014
The timetable can be found here, and more detail can be found here. There is also a list of funders and some information on volunteering, which would be very much welcomed! If you would like to be involved, there is an open meeting, details of which can be found here.
was held at St Cewydd's Church, Aberdw at 3pm on Saturday 22 March. Further details can be had from the funeral directors, N R Hope & Sons, Llwynglas, Newbridge-on-Wye, Powys LD1 6LH, Tel. 01597 860548, or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Litter Pick latest:
says: We have covered the first 10 miles of the Wye down from Hay and picked nearly 100 bags or large items of litter already. Just another 90 miles to go!
Sat March 29th support canoes from Hay to the the Boat Inn Whitney
Another link on flooding:
Causes of flooding: please read this important article on the causes of our recent and ongoing flooding problems. Click here
Lugg at Mordiford Jan 2014 Hampton Bishop Jan 2014
LATEST NEWS (from Tony Norman)
Preparations have been going on and we have full cooperation of Powys, Monmouthshire and Herefordshire County Councils. Staff from Keep Wales Tidy have agreed to support us where they can and the River Wye Preservation Trust have very generously supported us, again.
The staff at the WUF office thankfully field much of the organisation, web/blog management and publicity. The Monnow Rivers Association have given us full backing and will be organising much of the work on the Monnow.
I have already had 4 groups that have agreed to turn out from their offices to lend a hand. I have enthusiasm from 1 town so far to clear their own area. Some fishery owners/clubs have agreed to clear their own lengths and a canoe company has agreed to lend a hand. Other organisations and many individuals have offered to help as well. So we should be able to make a start!
I still need beat owners/tenants/clubs/syndicates/groups/individuals to offer to clear their own stretches - anywhere on the Wye.
For the 'bank walkers' we will publish dates as we go along..
For those that would be interested to go out on the Monnow catchment please contact Rob Denny at
For more up-to-date information, follow Tony on
2014 Wye Litter the next 100 miles
Tony Norman writes:
This will be the 4th year of this part of the project.
Between early February (after the winter floods!!) and the end of April
(when birds are nesting) we shall tackle the next 100 miles of river and
Statutory SSSI notification documents:
Here is a link to the Countryside Council for Wales (CCW) website where you can find information on SSSIs relevant to the River Wye and its tributaries in Wales, whether by county, by designation type, or by name. Click here. For example, here is a list of resources on the Lower Wye, while here are resources around Plynlimon, the source of the Wye.
RWPT AGM 2013
2013 AGM was held on Thursday evening 21st November, at the Bunch of Carrots, Hampton
Bishop, chaired by our
Vice President, Sir Colin Shepherd. After the formal business we
enjoyed an illustrated talk by Heather Hurley on "River
Trade and Transport on the Wye from Symonds Yat to Glasbury",
featuring the barges used, the cargoes carried and the wharf sites. Heather is the author of Herefordshire’s River Trade: Craft
and Cargo on the Wye & Lugg, (Logaston Press, 2013), and editor
of the Trust's own Landscape Origins of the
Light refreshments and pleasant socialising followed the presentation, to complete a very pleasant evening.
Water Voles on the Wye
The Monnow Rivers Association together with the Wye Valley Area of Outstanding Beauty (AONB) has cause to celebrate the fact that it has received a funding boost to implement its Water Voles on the Wye project. See here for an article from the Ross Gazette, 14 August, 2013.
A very enjoyable walk was held at Symonds Yat, led by Nic Howes, a geographer who walks through landscapes and interprets what is encountered. We covered both sides of the river, looking at the remains of the station and platform of the old Wye Valley Railway at Symonds Yat East before crossing on the hand ferry to Symonds Yat West. We saw the excavations of the New Weir Forge that have recently been carried out as part of the Overlooking the Wye Project, completed at the beginning of this year. We finished with a very enjoyable picnic, cruising up the river, with an excellent commentary provided by Kingfisher Cruises.
News for canoeists: see here for opinion on new charges
The Big Wye Litter Pick 2013
Latest from Tony Norman, 17/05/2013:
For more information see:Keep Wales Tidy and WUF, and to follow progress, please see WUF litter clear-ups.
Recent RWPT AGM:
Here is a summary of Dr Louise Manning's excellent talk given at the AGM. It makes interesting reading whether or not you were able to make the meeting! Very many thanks to Dr Manning both for giving the presentation and for providing the summary.
The Proposed Severn Barrage is being discussed again. Here is the recent submission against it by the Wye and Usk Foundation
The Wye Invader rides again!
Or it sails actually. It was caught on camera a few days ago floating down the Wye towards the Severn, where it is destined eventually for a dry dock. It was last seen moored at Symonds Yat. More information can be found here and here.
The proposed Water Bill
RWPT AGM 2012Thursday 29th November.
After the formal business of the AGM had been concluded there was an excellent presentation by Dr Louise Manning on Water from the Wye - Uses and Abuses. Dr Louise Manning, the wife of a Herefordshire farmer, is currently Lecturer in the Management of Food Production at the Royal Agricultural College, Cirencester.
She specialises in all aspects of sustainable food production and is well informed on current water management issues that affect agriculture and horticulture including the changes that will be required under the Water Framework Directive. She has clear views on the proposed centralisation of Navigation Authorities and the likely changes that will result from the formation, in Wales, of the new body that will combine the current responsibilities exercised by the Environment Agency, the Forestry Commission and CCW.
Water extraction, irrigation, diffuse
and direct pollution and Catchment Sensitive Farming Initiatives are all
issues on which she has strong views.
We have some pictures of our stall at the Jubilee event in Hereford earlier this year, and also of our stall at the County show:
Advance notice on the Big Wye Litter Pick 2013
It is proposed that this will take place Feb 1st to April 31st, as last year, with the support again of Keep Wales Tidy and WUF, as well as the RWPT. The pick would involve the Ithon, Irfon, Edw etc. and the main stem of the Wye down to Hay, thus completing the Welsh end of the river. This will be the 3rd hundred mile pickup and is now involving many, many volunteers across a whole range of river users and interests. Here is the press release after last year's successful pick, and, in case you're not convinced, here are the reasons why.
A little bit of Sci-fi fun:
Filmed in the 1980s near Hole-in-the-Wall on the banks of the Wye near Ross. Just in the first 5 minutes, mind: after that our heroes seem to stroll seamlessly from the banks of our very own Wye into a village near Interlaken in Switzerland. Never mind that the whole thing is dubbed into German - no one really needs the script! Click here to see the terrifying Tripods...
THE BIG UPPER WYE CLEAR UP COMPLETED!
RWPT AGM was held on Friday 25th November 2011 at the Bunch of Carrots, Hampton Bishop. After the formal business, Dr Stephen Marsh Smith OBE, executive director of the Wye & Usk Foundation, gave a presentation on the history of salmon fishing in the area, and proposed changes to the current river management systems.
We regret to announce the death of John Williams, long term member and co-founder of the Trust, on Monday 5th September 2011, aged 82 years. The funeral, which was very well attended, was held on Friday 16th September at the Church of St John the Baptist, Kings Caple.
The 2011 Summer Walk
A successful summer walk was held on the River Monnow at Monnow Lodge, Walterstone, on Sunday 14 August at 2.15 p.m., by kind permission of Mrs V Bailey and Mr R Davies and the Monnow Rivers Association. Click here for pictures and details.
Minister supports local plans for River Wye. See more here
The Nation's favourite river
Last November, the River Wye was voted the nation's favourite river. See more
Last winter's pictures of the frozen Wye:
... and round about:
The Trust's AGM 2010 was held on Thursday 25 November, and we enjoyed a fascinating talk by David Lovelace on The role of rivers in the development of farming and woodland management in Herefordshire.
In Spring 2010, we completed the Native Woodland Restoration in Herefordshire project. Click here for the Project Summary Report. David has recently published an article on the project in the Herefordshire Nature Trust Magazine. You can read it here.
A very successful and enjoyable annual Trust walk was held at Caradoc, Nr Ross-on-Wye on Thursday 15th July 2010 by kind permission of Major Patrick Darling. More details here.
One of our major concerns is erosion and pollution of the river Wye, and the state of its banks. These must be reported by phone directly to the Environment Agency on 0800 80 70 60, (24 hour service) giving location and grid reference if possible.
These attractive maps of the Upper and Lower Wye would are still available:
They can be obtained (unframed) from The River Wye Preservation Trust, 35 Link Road, Hereford, HR1 1BG, at £20 in colour as seen, or £10 in black and white. Email email@example.com for more information
One of our recent concerns has been the Severn Barrage. We were worried not only by its possible ecological consequences, but also by whether it would even be capable of delivering what was promised for it, andwe were pleased when the Government announced that they had dropped plans for it.
Last Autumn we published our book, Landscape Origins of the Wye Valley. For more details, including how to order, click here:
|The River Wye Preservation Trust, 35 Link Road, Hereford, HR1 1BG|
|The River Wye Preservation Trust, 35 Link Road, Hereford, HR1 1BG|