Minutes of Meeting of South Chilterns Catchment Project: Steering Group
Held at Manor House, Howbery Park, Wallingford
Friday 17th March 2017

Participant Representing
Allen Beechey Chilterns Chalk Streams Project
Brian Connorton Pang Valley Flood Forum/West Berkshire Countryside Society
Alison Futter EA Fisheries, Biodiversity & Geomorphology
Claudia Innes Thames Water
Jonny Johnson Royal Yachting Association
Stuart Keable EA Fisheries
Kay Lacey Pang Valley Flood Forum/West Berkshire Countryside Society
Alison Love Environment Agency
Henry Oliver North Wessex Downs AONB
Tom Ormesher National Farmers Union
Mike Overall Revive the Wye/ Little Marlow Lakes
Oliver Roden EA South Chilterns Catchment Coordinator
John Shaw Chiltern Rangers
Philip Simpkin Wycombe District Council
Lesley Sproat EA Biodiversity
Sam Riley Forestry Commission
Graham Scholey Environment Agency
Rebecca Tibbetts Natural England
Neil Tytler Foundation for Water Research (Catchment Host)
David Wales Thames Fisheries Consultative
Sally Wallington West Berkshire Farming & Countryside Project
Matthew Woodcock Forestry Commission

Above names in Bold indicate presence at the meeting; underlined names sent apologies

  1. Welcome, apologies and introductions

    Neil Tytler welcomed everyone to the meeting and thanked them for making the effort to attend.

    Rebecca Tibbets will be replaced by Charlotte Elliott also from Natural England. Sally Wallington had sent a message saying that the WBFCS Project had finished at the end of February but she currently sits on the WBCS committee and would attend our meetings when possible. Kay Lacey said she would be stepping down as Chair of the WBCS in June but would like to continue her involvement with the South Chilterns Catchment Partnership. She asked whether the Pang Valley Flood Forum, of which she is also Chair, could be included as a partner organisation. This was agreed. Beccy Micklen had left BBOWT and Neil Clennell has asked that all information is passed to him in the interim.

    All around the table introduced themselves in turn and their affiliation. Note: - Subsequent to the meeting an email was received from BBOWT that Judith Hartley, their Catchment Partnerships Officer, would be their representative in the future.

  2. Presentation

    Neil Tytler then proceeded to give a demonstration of the new South Chilterns Catchment Partnership website that is also the basis of the Catchment Plan. A number of suggestions were made by members of the Steering Group:

    • Some data relating to the Pang is now out of date particularly relating to the abstraction at Compton and should be removed;
    • Remove West Berkshire Farming and Wildlife Group from the Partners page as the initiative has now ceased;
    • Move Partners page to Home button;
    • Flooding also occurs at Hampstead Norreys;
    • The gauging weir at Pangbourne belongs to the EA not Thames Water;
    • Is it possible for all the Partners to have a copy of the text on the site to examine and comment upon before the site went live? NT agreed to this and would copy the text to all of the Partners for comment;
    • Is it possible to move the Aims and Objectives to a more prominent position;
    • There was much discussion regarding the placing of the site within the FWRís website and whether a separate standalone website was more preferable. NT said there was no money for this but would look to see how the FWR Branding could be toned down;
    • NT said he would be sending out an email to all partners asking for copies of their Logoís and permission to use them.

  3. Opinion Poll

    NT handed out a paper outlining a proposed South Chilterns Catchment Partnership Opinion Poll. This was based on one produced by the River Thames Catchment Partnership who had found it very useful in not only canvassing the local populationsí views on what was important to them but also in supporting bids for funding by showing funders that local views had been sought and incorporated into projects for which funds were being sought. A number of very useful comments and suggestions were forthcoming from those around the table to improve the form. Once they had been incorporated it was agreed to go ahead with the initiative for the South Chilterns.

  4. Catchment Based Approach (CaBA) Partnership Reporting & Evaluation Form

    NT handed out the CaBA Reporting Form to the Group for information on the changed end of contract reporting requirements. These have replaced the original written report required for Defra and are part of a project to quantify the success of the four years of Defra funding for the Catchment Based Approach. It is planned that the CaBA personnel will compile all the returns from all 109 Partnerships to present an overall project assessment of the success of the scheme to Defra.

  5. Other discussion points

    AB announced that the Chilterns AONB have received £1.8m of Lottery funding for Chalk Habitat and Heritage work of which £185k is for development work that includes the Wye. He also announced that a meeting celebrating the 20th Anniversary of the Chilterns Chalk Stream Project will be held on the 5th July at the Box Moor Trust Centre, Hemel Hempstead.

    BC raised the point suggesting that main topics for future meetings are Brexit and our relationship with the EU, how the Great Repeal Bill will affect the WFD and Climate Change initiatives.

    KL asked about whether the EA were looking at reducing abstraction licences particularly in relation to the Sulham Brook. GS said the EA were looking at a number of water company licences regarding potential impacts for the future and they will keep people in the loop particularly regarding the Sulham Brook.

    KL drew the Groupís attention to the Natural Flood Management (NFM) initiative expected to be announced soon. The idea is that, in conjunction with the EA, organisations will put forward NFM schemes up to a value of £50K to be funded out of a £1M pot of money from Defra. Applications to be submitted via the Catchment Partnership.

    OR notified the Group of a Highways England Project on sampling sediments arising from drainage from Motorways. In our area the only eligible Motorway is the M40 where it crosses the Wye at Loudwater, High Wycombe. The EA will be undertaking the sampling work.

  6. A. O. B.

    There was no AOB.

  7. Date of next meeting.

    It was agreed that the next meeting would be arranged for June and that NT would set up another Doodle Poll for preferred dates in May.

    The meeting closed at 13:00 hrs.
    NBT 08/05/17
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