This project, funded by the Environment Agency, and hosted by the River Nene Regional Park will endeavour to implement improvements along the length of the Ise valley with the aims of enhancing the biodiversity, providing increased access, increasing leisure and recreational activities, improving the landscape value and reducing the risk of flooding. Dr Robin Field, the Revital-ISE Project Officer, said 'there is a fantastic opportunity for partnership working between the landowners and land managers to provide a high quality environment on the Ise which meets the needs of a 21st century community in all ways.'
The project started in June 2008 and is funded initially for two years but hopefully will run for al least five years as there are a large number of potential projects along the catchment. Securing funds and completing the individual projects will be the primary role of the Revital-ISE project. Any organisations or groups who are interested in working with the Revital-ISE project can contact the Project Officer at email@example.com or by telephoning 01604-237243.
The River Ise is the largest of the tributaries of the River Nene in Northamptonshire, rising near Naseby and flowing east past Desborough, turning south at Geddington and passing through Kettering to join the River Nene at Wellingborough.
In the upper reaches the river is largely unmodified and retains typical natural features such as meanders, riffles and pools, indeed the 4.7km reach east of Barford Bridge is the only section of river in Northamptonshire to be designated a Site of Special Scientific Interest. The upper reaches, along with some of the tributary streams, are also important for several UK Biodiversity Action Plan Priority Species including white-clawed crayfish, water voles and otters. However, from just north of Kettering to the confluence with the Nene significant modification has taken place, firstly to create formal water features in the historic parkland at Boughton House and latterly, through Kettering and beyond, the river has been straightened and deepened in an attempt to reduce the risk of flooding.
The catchment is largely rural, comprising a mixed farming landscape intersperse with some important areas for wildlife - woodlands, grasslands and wetlands - and historic parkland. However it is also part of the Milton Keynes South Midlands Growth Area where major population growth is planned up to 2021. This will see the expansion of Kettering, Wellingborough, Desborough and Rothwell, which, in turn, will increase the pressure on the natural assets of the catchment. Furthermore new accessible, high quality and relevant green spaces within and close to existing and new communities will be required, as will the rejuvenation of existing green spaces, many of which are not fulfilling their potential.
1. The River Nene Regional Park (RNRP) is a Community Interest Company whose prime focus is on the co-ordination of Green Infrastructure at a sub-regional level, centred on the growth areas in Northamptonshire. Since its inception in 2004 the RNRP has secured and co-ordinated the delivery of £12 million of Green Infrastructure projects, and is currently supporting the development and delivery of future projects, having developed a strategic framework, that has been formally adopted, for the delivery of Green Infrastructure across the area.
2. The River Nene Regional Park - Researches and develops the concept and delivery of Green Infrastructure, Secure funding and co-ordinates the delivery of innovative projects that contribute to and enhance the Green Infrastructure network Green Infrastructure through partnership collaboration ensuring that there is a strategic and joined up approach among partner organisations involved in delivering Green Infrastructure. Partners include Regional Government, Local Authorities and Delivery Vehicles, Government Agencies and the Third or Voluntary Sector Champions and promotes the provision of Green Infrastructure a network of multi-functional green spaces, on behalf of the wider partnership
3. For more information, see www.riverneneregionalpark.org