CRF – Kirklees Brook
Restoring the Kirklees Brook
This project has only just been completed. A full report is due soon, but in the meantime, we have provided an overview of the project below for you. Please check back soon for the full project report.
The Kirklees Brook is a sub-catchment tributary of the River Irwell. Several weirs act as barriers to fish migration and disrupt the ecological and fluvial connectivity of the Brook. Numerous culverts also punctuate the water course, impeding the operation of natural flow processes and limiting the presence of aquatic flora and fauna.
“The Rivers Return: Restoring the Kirklees Brook project” aims to improve the health of the Kirklees Brook. With the help of the Catchment Restoration Fund, our partnership is delivering a range of weir removal, culvert removal and fish easement projects throughout the water course from 2012 through to March 2015. The geographical location of the Kirklees Brook within the Upper Irwell catchment means that delivery of these projects will impact a much wider area of the Irwell, functioning as a hugely important crucible/zone of primary productivity.
The keystone projects include:
- One culvert removal project
Removing the 40m long Tottington Printworks culvert, restoring natural fluvial processes, fish passage, and reducing flood risk concerns associated with over-capacity, blockage and collapse.
- Four weir removal projects
Restoring the natural ecological and fluvial connectivity of the Brook,
- Three fish easements projects
Where removal of weirs was determined not feasible, fish easement (fish pass) projects provide fish the freedom to move freely between habitats
- Three blockage removal projects
Where historical infrastructure had collapsed and impeded natural processes and connectivity, the blockages have been removed, restoring natural ecological and fluvial connectivity.
What will success look like?
- By 2015, the Kirklees Brook and its minor tributaries will support more diverse, abundant and sustain fish stocks that can maintain angling activity. Fish populations will be more resilient to problems associated with climate change, pollution, disease and in-breeding.
- By 2015, the Kirklees Brook will support a wider range of connected habitats. Protected species such as Otter and Water Vole will benefit from greater freedom of movement.
- By 2015 the Kirklees Brook will be natural in appearance and function. This will make the Brook more resilient to changes in flow conditions such as drought or flooding, and will lead to a more robust, diverse, attractive and accessible environment. There will be a reduction in flood risk in some areas due to an increased