Our team of Ribble Rivers Trust volunteers are incredibly important to the us. They are the vital work force we need to help deliver our projects, and the eyes and ears of this vast area! All volunteer days are covid safe with extra precautions in place to keep you, our staff, and the public safe.
With over 3,114 miles of rivers and streams in the catchment we an activity for everyone. It is incredibly rewarding and an excellent opportunity. You can enjoy the great outdoors and meet like-minded people, as well as gaining experience and learning new skills.
All your help is appreciated, and volunteers can do as much or as little as they can manage. All tools and training is provided by us, and we fully clean everything between uses.
We can’t be everywhere at once. But, with a dedicated team of volunteers on the ground, we can get pretty close!
Tree and hedge planting- we all know trees are amazing! They provide habitats for insects, fish, birds, and mammals so help to boost biodiversity and wildlife numbers. Trees also shade rivers keeping them cool in increasingly warm summers, filter pollution, naturally reduce flood risk, and stabilise riverbanks. Plus, they lock up carbon, helping us to slow down the effects of climate change. No wonder tree planting is our most popular volunteer activity!
Fencing- fencing and tree planting which often go hand in hand. Putting up fences along riverbanks helps trees and other ground flora to flourish, improves the quality of the river by preventing direct pollution from animals, and prevents erosion and soil loss.
Brash bundling- this involves sinking posts into the riverbed, then filling the gap between the new posts and the riverbank with brash from fallen trees, willow cuttings, or Christmas trees. This quickly fills with silt, not only preventing further riverbank erosion, but also helping build the riverbank back up.
Clean ups- every year we get help from hundreds of volunteers who come together to keep our catchment clean, in a few hours a heavily littered area can be transformed.
Invasive species control- our catchments biggest invasive problem is Himalayan balsam- luckily pulling balsam is satisfying, and pretty fun too! Like clean ups the transformation takes just a few hours. It’s great to see the instant improvements you have helped to make.
Site management- once we’ve created a scheme, we can’t just leave it and hope for the best. Our volunteers regularly visit our sites to help us clean them and remove tubes. They also control any unwanted plants such as rhododendrons which sometimes try and sneak into our woodlands!
Riverfly monitoring- this network of volunteers have been trained by us to test water quality by monitoring invertebrate levels by visiting an allocated site monthly, carrying out a kick sample, recording the findings and then sending the data back to us, which is then used to track water quality over time, and identify any potential problems.