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Nobody seems to have noticed that NOT dredging rivers is in fact EU policy Nobody seems to have noticed that NOT dredging rivers is in fact EU policy

The current flooding crisis has highlighted the reality of climate change, as well as the inability of politicians to deal with what are essentially long-term problems says Rod Sturdy.

 

 

 

 

 

 

The national press has been full of the usual letters calling, in effect, for a return to the widespread (and very destructive) dredging of rivers. Anyone who remembers the wholesale ‘improvement’ of ‘problem’ rivers which used to be carried out will know that such a watercourse after the treatment is a heart-breaking sight: stretches straightened and canalised, bushes severely pruned or ripped out, banks reduced to bare soil and the slope cut to a uniform angle, trees removed and every vestige of cover removed and burnt. Nothing is allowed to hinder the rapid run-off in times of flood and as soon as the river shows signs of going back to nature, the process is repeated. It reduces a river to the status of a drainage ditch.


Nobody seems to have noticed that not dredging rivers is in fact EU policy. Far from there being, in the words of the local MP for those afflicted on the Levels, ‘a twenty-year backlog of dredging’, the reality is that there is a policy in place to encourage such wetlands to flood: habitat restoration, in other words.


It has also, in human terms, been referred to as ‘managed retreat’. The idea (a very sensible one in my view) is to create ‘washlands’, areas which are allowed to flood both for the purpose of water management and for the benefit of wildlife. All I can comment personally here is: ‘thank God for the EU’. I note as I write this that the said MP is accusing Chris Smith, Head of the EA, of cowardice in the face of an ongoing crisis. The name of the game is as usual to secure short-term political advantage - and the name-calling will go on for sure.


If anyone has been cowardly, it is the politicians. They should long ago, with that agreed environmental policy firmly in mind, have taken the bull by the horns and formally agreed a policy of buy-out/compensation for those few living and working on the Somerset Levels. Likewise the London-Penzance railway line, which is virtually in the sea at low tide even before a storm brews: would it not have been better to exercise a bit of foresight and spend money on re-routing it away from the coast, instead of endlessly debating the doubtful economic benefits of the land-eating, ear-splitting and environmentally destructive HS2?


Local politics is no better of course. There are still council planning departments which are approving applications to build on flood plains, an extremely short-sighted policy. Central government has not helped by subsidising insurance in such areas. All short-term politics. But then, politics was never a very long-term game, was it? It all goes back to a shortage of suitable building land in some areas, of course, combined with an excess of human beings.


The latter thought is of course not just mine; David Attenborough and many other eminent environmentalists and wildlife experts have been in agreement for some considerable time that the earth would be in much better shape if there were not so many of us humans on it, let alone in places which are barely inhabitable to begin with, such as areas liable to disappear under water regularly. If global warming does run its full course as predicted, then there will certainly be fewer of us. Many will be wiped out: rising sea levels, disease and heat-waves, not to mention the scramble to occupy inhabitable areas, will all take their toll. But no politician will tell you these things; they are too long-term to matter when it comes to getting yourself elected.


But  back to dredging.


February 2014 flood warningsThe word has hardly been out of the national news for weeks now. There have been many letters written to the national press calling for a return to the wholesale dredging of rivers throughout the country. Apart from the horrendous expense, in both financial and environmental terms, of doing this, it has long been agreed that it does not work.


Done partially on a river, it can cause mayhem downstream in the form of sudden run-off of a massive amount of water hitting urban areas. How would the residents of Taunton, for example, view a volume and force of water powerful enough to rip out bridges, all done to benefit those few on the Somerset Levels? Because every once in a while (or more often than that, if climate change has its way) there will come such a massive amount of rain that even the best-dredged river cannot cope with it.


This is in fact the case as I write this.


The government is even considering allowing farmers to carry out ‘DIY dredging’. This is without doubt a recipe for disaster in environmental terms. If it went ahead, it is unlikely to be done with much finesse.


There is another element here, and one which during the present ‘monsoons’ has not even rated a mention in the national media. Given climate change, the frequency of droughts is also likely to increase. The recent 2-year spell without significant rain led to a critical shortage of water. The question needs to be asked: if we are currently experiencing mammoth amounts of rain, why is our only response the urge to speed it on its way out to sea? Why are there not better ways of managing it so that it is available when we next have a shortage? The simple fact is that we as a country have no coherent, joined-up national water management policy – yet another political failure.


In the light of all the above, it is clear that as anglers we face an uncertain future. We need to make sure that we are strong and organised enough to exert the right influence on politicians and government bodies and get them to think and act long-term for a change. As it happens, most of our lobbying demands will coincide with those of the environmental movement. But we need to show, through strength of numbers, that we, as anglers, are independent and to be taken seriously.


That is why I urge everyone who reads this and is not a member of the Angling Trust to join now - for our future’s sake.







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Comments (54 posted):

tiinker on 11/02/2014 11:14:47
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We are not the only ones who are getting floods a friend of mine has a fishery in south west France and the towns and cities in his area are all getting flooded he sent some news photos of his area in France and it looks bad. Evidently parts of Portugal are suffering from serious flooding as well, so it is very wide spread.
the blanker on 11/02/2014 12:36:27
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I am ok, I live on top of a hill, shame for the others though.
barbelboi on 11/02/2014 12:45:59
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For the flood affected Somerset folk they’ve written a new song to raise money for ‘FloodAid’ – ‘Trouble over Bridgewater.’...............
dorsetandchub on 11/02/2014 16:24:34
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Keep telling you you should take more water with it, Jerry.......:D
MarkTheSpark on 11/02/2014 18:40:48
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Well said, Mr Sturdy. I agree with every word. As for that fat g1t Pickles disgracefully criticising the EA when all it's done is offered the benefit of its science and followed rules laid down by central government, I think that confirmed that Pickles is a show-boating twerp.
The bad one on 12/02/2014 02:50:47
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Whilst some of what is written by Mr Sturdy is correct, there are some inaccuracies in it. It’s also yet another not very subtle attempt to convince people on here to join the ATr. When will he ever learn :omg: To correct some of the inaccuracies he’s made, Taunton is up river from the flooded areas of the Levels (Moorlands) on the R Tone and has suffered a 7.4 increase in population over the last 10 years (ONS info) As is Yeovil and has had the same population increase. Ergo housing development has taken place in the towns to reflect the population increase and added to the rivers load through land run off. Local Councils giving permission for development on floodplains they do without doubt do that, but are reliant on the Experts on flooding and that is the EA. Part of my living is made from objecting to inappropriate planning applications on behalf of communities and I can tell you as fact that the EA do not as a statutory consultees object to PAs for development on floodplains. Even though the possibility/probability is a serious Material Matter in planning law. If they don’t make an objection to a floodplain application then the planning officers and committee have very few grounds for refusal because of potential flooding risk. The EA needs to take its finger from up its ar** and start to unequivocally object to such applications. Give the planning officers and committees the tools to do the job of refusal. The Govt is not considering giving farmer the right to do DIY dredging they have done it and are running pilots in 9 areas. Keep up! We don’t have a coherent national water plan. Correct we don’t, but you need to think about that one a little further before you throw out generalisations like that. Thanks to the rain every reservoir and aquifer if full to capacity nationally! So to increase capacity still further it means building more reservoirs or a national water transfer system and all the inherent environmental and ecological problems identified over many years associated with both. Oh and wouldn’t the privatised water Cos love that way of printing money for it shareholder eh!
itsfishingnotcatching on 12/02/2014 07:17:09
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While not having the level of information TBO has relating to this two things strike me. Firstly I was generally in agreement with the comments made by Mr Sturdy until the reference to joining the ATr in his final sentence which would in my opinion have absolutely no effect on the current circumstances. Secondly, the EA is greatly influenced by the politicians who fund it and if it is true it has made no efforts to stop building on flood plains then it is at least partly to blame for the current situation. As with the uncontrolled discharge of sewage, no doubt flowing into the Thames as I write, it shows the true effectiveness of our "Environment" Agency.
theartist on 12/02/2014 12:01:08
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Theres got to be someone to blame nowadays despite it being down to the weather. There's been an unprecidented level of rain. I found it a bit disappointing that a woman interviewed in her car on the news said overseas aid should be spent on the floods. Whilst its not nice whats happening to people's home and cars i'm sure some starving folk in the third world would jump at the chance of a riverside property along the Thames. Perspective is needed . I turn off the sound on the news now as i know theyre going to talk to someone who's after blood rather than get balanced comments.
geoffmaynard on 12/02/2014 13:39:28
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As someone who can now claim to own a riverside property on the Thames - it wasn't riverside until a few days ago - does this mean that my property value has increased by 50% ? ;) Rod mentions this in the article. "Central government has not helped by subsidising insurance in such areas." Have they? Why don't I know about this! I'm paying 2K year for insurance, all down to my postcode as usual. Am I eligible for a subsidy, if so who should I apply to?
The bad one on 12/02/2014 15:04:50
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As someone who can now claim to own a riverside property on the Thames - it wasn't riverside until a few days ago - does this mean that my property value has increased by 50% ? ;) Rod mentions this in the article. "Central government has not helped by subsidising insurance in such areas." Have they? Why don't I know about this! I'm paying 2K year for insurance, all down to my postcode as usual. Am I eligible for a subsidy, if so who should I apply to? Well Goff you will live in Henley "in" Thames :D And I don't want to depress you further, but you may be finding the other property is going to be renamed as Hey "in" Wye according to the flooding predictions. :( ---------- Post added at 15:04 ---------- Previous post was at 14:41 ---------- Compare and contrast Charlse Clovers piece here http://www.fishingmagic.com/forums/fm-news-feature-comments/346463-leta-s-not-unlearn-lessons-about-dredging.html to Mr Sturdy's efforts. You'll then get my drift.
cg74 on 12/02/2014 16:18:18
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[ame=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w7RIgs3eygo]Wur Doomed, Entombed & Marooned... - YouTube[/ame]
markg on 12/02/2014 16:27:45
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One of the bigger questions maybe, whats caused this. Apparently its a kink in the jet stream high above the earth. This kink is sucking all the low pressures coming across the Atlantic right over southern England. Normally they sweep past the country and disperse them selves elsewhere over a wider area. So, is this kink just an anomaly? Will it appear next year or any other year in the near future? Be interesting to see what the scientist make of it but, it could be just a one-off ! Regarding the flood, I expect there will be a lot of talk, and not much done. It will go away, the clean up will happen. The Government will be seen to do some dredging on a few rivers where the flooding is worst. Purely because this will be popular as the electorate seem to think it is the only answer and it is probably one of the cheaper options.
davieboy on 13/02/2014 20:02:05
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One of the bigger questions maybe, whats caused this. Apparently its a kink in the jet stream high above the earth. This kink is sucking all the low pressures coming across the Atlantic right over southern England. Normally they sweep past the country and disperse them selves elsewhere over a wider area. So, is this kink just an anomaly? Will it appear next year or any other year in the near future? Be interesting to see what the scientist make of it but, it could be just a one-off ! Regarding the flood, I expect there will be a lot of talk, and not much done. It will go away, the clean up will happen. The Government will be seen to do some dredging on a few rivers where the flooding is worst. Purely because this will be popular as the electorate seem to think it is the only answer and it is probably one of the cheaper options. Markg The reason behind the succession of storms is the brutal winter in the USA and Canada and the massive temperature difference between the very cold air over the land area and the higher than normal sea surface temperatures its called Cyclogenesis, These are then carried along the route of the jet stream and unfortunately this year it is over or just to the south of us. Would love to know where Rod Sturdy gets "highlighted the reality of climate change", the Global temperature has not risen in 17years 5 month (depending on which data series is used) even the Met Office admits to this see here The recent pause in warming - Met Office :wh Next bit of nonsense"London-Penzance railway line, which is virtually in the sea at low tide even before a storm brews.UTTER *******S lets see a picture of a section of the railway at low tide..see here [url=http://s0.geograph.org.uk/geophotos/02/80/59/2805915_308fa347.jpg]http://s0.geograph.org.uk/geophotos/02/80/59/2805915_308fa347.jpg now if Rod wants to travel down there and jump off the top of that wall i'll pop down and wait with my mobile and call the ambulance. As for dredging well its always has served the Levels and since the stopping of dredging by the EA in the early 90's!! well here we are farms and house's flooded out ,now I am not saying even with dredging flooding wouldn't occurred it would just not to the degree it has! dredging is not a yearly occurrence, once done it should not be done for many years to come (depending on surrounding land use) and rivers do recover if dredging was/is so destructive how come we yearn to have fishing like our fathers and grandfather days...when dredging was a common sight??. question is what come first businesses, home, farms or wetland habitat, bird sanctuary's
geoffmaynard on 13/02/2014 20:33:43
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Would love to know where Rod Sturdy gets "highlighted the reality of climate change" So are you in DeNile too Davie? Coz we need a new Environment minister :)
davieboy on 13/02/2014 21:14:33
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So are you in DeNile too Davie? Coz we need a new Environment minister :) Good one, no I am in Devon:)the environment minster is doing fine,and the climate is always changing slowing and inexorably towards a glacial or interglacial, never stable and always in total chaos, Its only the uber PC eco-mentalists who think you can stop climate change, And are generally running around like "headless chickens":omg:
soft plastic on 13/02/2014 21:26:02
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One of the bigger questions maybe, whats caused this. Apparently its a kink in the jet stream high above the earth. This kink is sucking all the low pressures coming across the Atlantic right over southern England. Normally they sweep past the country and disperse them selves elsewhere over a wider area. So, is this kink just an anomaly? Will it appear next year or any other year in the near future? Be interesting to see what the scientist make of it but, it could be just a one-off ! Regarding the flood, I expect there will be a lot of talk, and not much done. It will go away, the clean up will happen. The Government will be seen to do some dredging on a few rivers where the flooding is worst. Purely because this will be popular as the electorate seem to think it is the only answer and it is probably one of the cheaper options. It's not a one off. Remember last Spring? We had freezing North Easterlies for week after week. The position of the jet stream(further South than normal) was blamed then as well. Sent from my GT-I9300 using Tapatalk
davieboy on 13/02/2014 21:52:54
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It's not a one off. Remember last Spring? We had freezing North Easterlies for week after week. The position of the jet stream(further South than normal) was blamed then as well. Sent from my GT-I9300 using Tapatalk Correct, just high pressure to the North East of the UK happens in winter! great shame about the extra 30,000 plus pensioners that died because they couldn't afford to heat their homes though.:mad:
bennygesserit on 13/02/2014 22:15:24
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@ The bad one Are you saying the EA are consulted on planning matters and are not objecting or there is no statuary need to consult them? Or are they under instruction to waive developments through? You can imagine a directive to the EA re green energy and hydro but not relating to flood plains. ---------- Post added at 22:15 ---------- Previous post was at 22:13 ---------- Sorry just free read your post so there is a statuary consultation
The bad one on 14/02/2014 02:15:32
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It’s irksome somewhat to see dredging of the rivers by the EA being used as the panacea to the ills of the Levels or anywhere else for that matter, by locals and every pundit the media can throw at it. Including that little git Paul Daniels on This Week last night. It isn’t and can’t simple as! What those on the Levels aren’t asking is what is the Hydraulic Total Capacity (HTC) of the Levels before flooding will happen? And is “everybody” playing a part in maintaining that HTC, including those who have the responsibility to maintain the ditches and dikes on their land, which aren’t the responsibility of the EA, but theirs? Clearly they are not from what this guy is saying who has studied professional the hydrology of the Levels for many years. Floods on the Somerset Levels: a sad tale of ignorance and neglect - International Water Power And as the saying goes, “Attack and blame someone else for your own failings!” ---------- Post added at 02:15 ---------- Previous post was at 01:45 ---------- Benny yes I am saying the EA do not make formal written objections to PAs on Floodplains. Where I've seen them make a comment, which isn't that often, the wording is at best nebulous and ambiguous. It was interesting tonight on Question Time from Scunthorpe the local Council has given planning consent for a major housing development on a floodplain. I can state with some confidence, that if I searched the planning portal and the local Planning Officer’s report to the planning committee for determination, if they have made a comment, it would be as I’ve stated. Nebulous and ambiguous comments is no longer good enough regarding this kind of developments, they need to be clear and unambiguous with a formal objection to these developments.
bennygesserit on 14/02/2014 05:12:51
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So the legal obligation of landowners to maintain ditches should be enforced as opposed to dredging ( of all associated rivers along a significant portion of their length ) . Ditches deliver potentially 18,000,000 m cubed storage whereas dredging an , additional, 1.,700,000 m cubed per day capacity to deliver to the sea. The only flaw i can see with that is , unless I have read the figures wrong , there must already be some storage capacity in the ditches and the cost of dredging must be enormous let alone the assumed eco impact.
mick b on 14/02/2014 11:01:19
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Don't knock the Environment Agency. The Environment Agency are only a Statutory advisor to the Local Councils. The EA don't make planning decisions, they are just a consultee. Its up to the Local Council if they take the advice the EA provides or ignore it. The Local Councils have the final say on what is built in their area. The EA do provide a Flood Risk Map to Local Councils and a Flood Risk Assessment should be submitted with a planning application. The EA recommend the use of their Sequential Test to planning applications in flood zones, however this is only a recommendation not a statutory regulation. If a Local Council gives planning consent nobody has right of appeal. If a Local Council rejects an application only the Developer has right of appeal. If a Local Council turns down an application it can go to a Public Inquiry where the Planning Inspector listens to presentations from objectors and makes the final decision. It should be remembered that EA has lost a lot of staff over the past six years which this has had a serious impact on what they can or cannot do. They now don't have the capacity to look at all planning applications and have to be more selective in the work they undertake. In many cases the EA are relying on standard advice to local Councils rather than responding to each individual application. The EA have also been instructed by Government to 'seek a positive solutions-focused approach' meaning they must look for solutions rather than raise objections (irrespective of the reason). The bottom line is that the EA is a Government body, and if the Government instructs them to do something (or do nothing at all) they must obey or suffer drastic restructuring! .
davieboy on 14/02/2014 15:03:33
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Don't knock the Environment Agency. The Environment Agency are only a Statutory advisor to the Local Councils. The EA don't make planning decisions, they are just a consultee. Its up to the Local Council if they take the advice the EA provides or ignore it. The Local Councils have the final say on what is built in their area. The EA do provide a Flood Risk Map to Local Councils and a Flood Risk Assessment should be submitted with a planning application. The EA recommend the use of their Sequential Test to planning applications in flood zones, however this is only a recommendation not a statutory regulation. If a Local Council gives planning consent nobody has right of appeal. If a Local Council rejects an application only the Developer has right of appeal. If a Local Council turns down an application it can go to a Public Inquiry where the Planning Inspector listens to presentations from objectors and makes the final decision. It should be remembered that EA has lost a lot of staff over the past six years which this has had a serious impact on what they can or cannot do. They now don't have the capacity to look at all planning applications and have to be more selective in the work they undertake. In many cases the EA are relying on standard advice to local Councils rather than responding to each individual application. The EA have also been instructed by Government to 'seek a positive solutions-focused approach' meaning they must look for solutions rather than raise objections (irrespective of the reason). The bottom line is that the EA is a Government body, and if the Government instructs them to do something (or do nothing at all) they must obey or suffer drastic restructuring! . Mmmm just one thing to correct you on there : the E.A is a non-departmental public body (NDPB) or(quasi-autonomous non-governmental organisations). NDPBs are not an integral part of any government department and carry out their work at arm's length from ministers. Although ministers are ultimately responsible to Parliament for the activities of bodies sponsored by their department. Plus most of the policies comes from the EU not central UK government just look at the insane regulations on dredged silt from river which if removed from site/field then becomes classed automatically toxic as waste:omg::omg: As far the staff cut are concerned, they still have 11,200 employee's hardly understaffed! when compared to the USA's EPA which is staffed by (15,900) and responsible for land area 80 times the size of the UK! When you look at the cost of the EA and where the money is actually spent £395 million on staff (£592 million including pensions) compared to £219 million on capital projects, and just £20 million on maintaining rivers. its easy to see why we are in the state we are with flooding and flood defence's :wh
mike47 on 14/02/2014 15:44:53
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Have enjoyed reading all contributions to this theme, but am staggered by the comparative figures for EA and U.S. EPA numbers. Makes you think eh!
The bad one on 14/02/2014 16:13:08
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Mick sorry to disagree with you here, but criticism where criticism is due! And development on floodplains is where the EA is weak, sequential test or not! As a Stat Consult, they do have the power and right to object but rarely do they us it. Fact! They do not have the right to stop a development, and yes you are right the ultimate decision rests with the Local Planning Committee. That stated they are the Experts and only a fool of a committee would not take cognisance of an unequivocal statement that development (objection) should not take place on a given site because of the severe flood risk. I’d also point out that recent events have thrown into total disarray their Flood Risk Maps up and down the country. In short they are outdated and need overhauling. I do on many occasions talk to Planning Officers and regularly us Planning Aid (PA). PA is a charity that works on behalf of communities to give them equality under the law in planning terms. They are practicing Planning Officers with a social conscience who know that the system is weighted in favour of the developer because of the money and expertise they can throw at it. Many times when development on floodplains has been discussed with them, they have criticised the EA for being weak and lack of forcefulness (objecting) over such developments. And for me that’s good enough to make the criticism I have. Yes objectors don’t have the right of appeal only the developer has that, but objectors do have the right to a Judicial Review on narrow points in the decision process. And this is increasing in usage amongst communities and objectors even though it is expensive, av 10K for a hearing. If a council makes a refusal the developer appeals to the Sec of Stat and he refers it to the Planning Inspectorate…. Independent allegedly? The Inspector assigned weighs the grounds for refusal against planning law, local plans etc and make a decision based on that. The Council then can have the cost awarded against them if he/she sides with the developer. And that cost av. 100k and this can stop councils refusing some planning applications for good reasons. And in my view the award of costs against needs removing from the process, as it’s skewing the system. It should go back to what it was and each side carries the costs themselves. If the inspector is undecided he can recommend to the SS an inquiry that can take two forms a Local Inquiry or a full Public Inquiry. The SS also has the power to make the decision on his own. This Govt doesn’t like the inquiry process and the SS has on many occasions made the decision himself. Strangely most of his decisions favour the developer….piper and tunes come to mind. I take your point re reorganisation if they EA don’t do as they are told but would point out to all they are a Qango and are supposed to be independent of Govt and why the have a board and a chair at the head of it.
davieboy on 14/02/2014 16:17:43
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Have enjoyed reading all contributions to this theme, but am staggered by the comparative figures for EA and U.S. EPA numbers. Makes you think eh! Yeah, don't it just couple of more figures for you. Nearly 7,000 vehicles or 1 for every 2employee's:eek: Despite complaining about cuts to budget the Environment Agency’s total expenditure has actually increased, up from £1,166.6 million in 2011/12 to £1,207.4 million in 2012/13. :omg: And despite blaming staff cut backs for the lack of action on flooding the agency’s workforce has expanded over the last year, with the number of personnel rising from 11,363 to 12,252. :eek: Lord Smith, who is on a salary of £97,365-a-year for a three-day week,:eek::eek: nice work if you can get(if you call it work)
The bad one on 14/02/2014 16:28:13
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Have enjoyed reading all contributions to this theme, but am staggered by the comparative figures for EA and U.S. EPA numbers. Makes you think eh! It's comparing apples with pears guy. The remit is a holistic approach covering land water and air. In the US each is separate and employs three times the numbers the EA does. Even taking into account the larger country and area. Don't take everything the Daily Mail Tells you! And so should silt be classed as toxic waste it's full of toxic substances from sewage works and industrial process that legally discharge to the rivers. ---------- Post added at 16:28 ---------- Previous post was at 16:24 ---------- Lord smith is standing down this year and no doubt will be replaced with a Tory Gandee at 100k a years He ho eh!
mick b on 14/02/2014 16:55:14
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Have enjoyed reading all contributions to this theme, but am staggered by the comparative figures for EA and U.S. EPA numbers. Makes you think eh! Daviboy, Point of correction; Nationally, the Environment Agency spent £45 million in the last financial year on improving rivers not the £20 million you state. Ref: EA website, role of dredging, 28:01:2014 Also, In a previous post you stated that 30,000 + pensioners died because they couldn't heat their homes....surly that is a typo??......:confused: Re; The EA. If the CEO/Chairman of a Public Body (the EA) quasi or otherwise, goes against the 'wishes' of the Government Minister who is providing its funding what do you think the result would be? A pat on the back and a Knighthood or funding cuts and a fast exit? Yes the remit may say 'at arms length from Government Ministers' but the way the funding is set-up ensures they cannot be autonomous. Another correction; I did not state they were understaffed, but that staff cuts had impacted on the work they could undertake. Further; The USA's EPA do not carry out the same work as the EA so comparisons are irrelevant (although they might look good if your trying to derogate the EA). As for the staffing costs of the EA...:confused: I can only assume you work for nothing and/or that you believe highly qualified employees shouldn't be paid the rate for the job. .
davieboy on 14/02/2014 17:02:30
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It's comparing apples with pears guy. The remit is a holistic approach covering land water and air. In the US each is separate and employs three times the numbers the EA does. Even taking into account the larger country and area. Don't take everything the Daily Mail Tells you! And so should silt be classed as toxic waste it's full of toxic substances from sewage works and industrial process that legally discharge to the rivers. ---------- Post added at 16:28 ---------- Previous post was at 16:24 ---------- Lord smith is standing down this year and no doubt will be replaced with a Tory Gandee at 100k a years He ho eh! If discharge was toxic it wouldn't be allowed to be discharged in to rivers legally would it! :omg: Here you can chew over the EU directive yourself http://http://www.thegreenblue.org.uk/pdf/z%201075.%20Dredging%20inland%20waterways.pdf Should place a bet on Smiths replacement you could earn a few quid with "insider knowledge" you clearly have:wh I don't read the Daily Mail:p Guido Fawkes old chap much more reliable and accurate:cool:
bennygesserit on 14/02/2014 17:11:52
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If discharge was toxic it wouldn't be allowed to be discharged in to rivers legally would it! :omg: Here you can chew over the EU directive yourself http://http://www.thegreenblue.org.uk/pdf/z%201075.%20Dredging%20inland%20waterways.pdf Should place a bet on Smiths replacement you could earn a few quid with "insider knowledge" you clearly have:wh I don't read the Daily Mail:p Guido Fawkes old chap much more reliable and accurate:cool: My guess would be its toxic when disturbed because its heavier than water or buried so its safe in situ.
mick b on 14/02/2014 17:24:33
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As a Stat Consult, they do have the power and right to object but rarely do they us it. Yes I totally agree. The biggest stumbling block is that however politely we express it this government wants to build thousands of houses come what may, and they and the Developers are linked together like Siamese twins! (Next time your out and about keep looking for all those thousands of people living in cardboard boxes because they cant find a house to buy..:wh) The problem with walking softly and carrying a big stick is if you never use it, no-one thinks you have it! All your detailed points are correct especially those concerning planning decisions made by the Secretary Of State all going in favour of the Developers.
davieboy on 14/02/2014 17:31:56
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Daviboy, Point of correction; Nationally, the Environment Agency spent £45 million in the last financial year on improving rivers not the £20 million you state. Ref: EA website, role of dredging, 28:01:2014 I stand corrected Also, In a previous post you stated that 30,000 + pensioners died because they couldn't heat their homes....surly that is a typo??......:confused: See Here http://http://www.telegraph.co.uk/health/elderhealth/9959856/Its-the-cold-not-global-warming-that-we-should-be-worried-about.html Re; The EA. If the CEO/Chairman of a Public Body (the EA) quasi or otherwise, goes against the 'wishes' of the Government Minister who is providing its funding what do you think the result would be? A pat on the back and a Knighthood or funding cuts and a fast exit? Yes the remit may say 'at arms length from Government Ministers' but the way the funding is set-up ensures they cannot be autonomous. I don't think I said they go against government "wishes" I said they HAVE to follow EU regulation not UK central government wishes Another correction; I did not state they were understaffed, but that staff cuts had impacted on the work they could undertake. How can staff cuts impact? when they have increased staff numbers!! from 11,363 to 12,252. Further; The USA's EPA do not carry out the same work as the EA so comparisons are irrelevant (although they might look good if your trying to derogate the EA). So why are both called Environmental Agencies..one might have separate sections for water,air ect but both cover the same ground As for the staffing costs of the EA...:confused: I can only assume you work for nothing and/or that you believe highly qualified employees shouldn't be paid the rate for the job. No! I work for a wage just as they do and I'd expect them to! if you look back at those figures surely something sticks out, the cost of manning the Agency and the money spent on capital projects nearly £600million against £220million, nearly 3 times more spent on staff cost...and you think that's OK?? and who say's they are all highly qualified??...something you not telling us all here is there?
The bad one on 15/02/2014 01:25:00
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If discharge was toxic it wouldn't be allowed to be discharged in to rivers legally would it! :omg: Here you can chew over the EU directive yourself http://http://www.thegreenblue.org.uk/pdf/z%201075.%20Dredging%20inland%20waterways.pdf Link doesn't work. And you really shouldn't talk about subjects you know little about. Of course toxic substances are released constantly in the nations rivers through water treatment works and other routes. Include heavy metals, endocrine disrupters and there's 300 known of them going in the rivers every hour, Hydrocarbons with little and in many cases no treatment from road runoff. Other toxic pollutants from industrial processes and farming. Then there's 1300 identified old landfill site nationally, leaking all sorts of historic toxic **** directly into water courses and rivers. Many of which are now banned because of the known toxicity and threat to human and animal health. Locally, only 3 weeks ago, 5 million litres of fracking water was put through Daveyhumle treatment works (Larges in Europe) and into the Manchester Ship Canal and ultimately the River Mersey containing radioactive materials 50 times the background normal level. United Utilities (Water Treatment Authority) and Cuadrilla (Frackers) didn’t even know they were not allowed to put it through the treatment works, as it wasn’t licensed for it or have the ability to treat radioactive contaminated water. We wait with baited breath as to whether the EA will prosecute over this. All of these toxic substances accumulate in the river silts and why the EU thankfully have banned dredging waste being piled up on the banksides. Doh silt dries out and gets picked up by the wind and put back into the wider environment, posing significant threats to health by many pathways. Eg Breathing them in, ingestion from contamination on thinks we touch through the skin and/or eat. By plant take and consumption of them, where they bioaccumulate in the body. The simplistic sound biting of UKIP about such EU regulations become very threadbare when you start to look at them in detail and why they were brought in.
davieboy on 15/02/2014 12:46:44
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Link doesn't work. And you really shouldn't talk about subjects you know little about. Of course toxic substances are released constantly in the nations rivers through water treatment works and other routes. Include heavy metals, endocrine disrupters and there's 300 known of them going in the rivers every hour, Hydrocarbons with little and in many cases no treatment from road runoff. Other toxic pollutants from industrial processes and farming. Then there's 1300 identified old landfill site nationally, leaking all sorts of historic toxic **** directly into water courses and rivers. Many of which are now banned because of the known toxicity and threat to human and animal health. Locally, only 3 weeks ago, 5 million litres of fracking water was put through Daveyhumle treatment works (Larges in Europe) and into the Manchester Ship Canal and ultimately the River Mersey containing radioactive materials 50 times the background normal level. United Utilities (Water Treatment Authority) and Cuadrilla (Frackers) didn’t even know they were not allowed to put it through the treatment works, as it wasn’t licensed for it or have the ability to treat radioactive contaminated water. We wait with baited breath as to whether the EA will prosecute over this. All of these toxic substances accumulate in the river silts and why the EU thankfully have banned dredging waste being piled up on the banksides. Doh silt dries out and gets picked up by the wind and put back into the wider environment, posing significant threats to health by many pathways. Eg Breathing them in, ingestion from contamination on thinks we touch through the skin and/or eat. By plant take and consumption of them, where they bioaccumulate in the body. The simplistic sound biting of UKIP about such EU regulations become very threadbare when you start to look at them in detail and why they were brought in. Which was the point I was making.. Hence they can not be discharged in the a river LEGALLY, you made it sound as if its a free for all just dump any thing in to rivers scenario! it's not!. Road run off is a unfortunate product on modern living ?what would you have us all do, go back to horse and cart, stop producing plastics because they contain hydrocarbons, and start wearing cambric shirts We have be bioaccumulating for 100's if 1000's of years and we don't seem to have suffered too much as a species do we? Fretting about such things will shorten your live quicker than any bioaccumulating of your body:w
The bad one on 15/02/2014 13:36:02
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Like I said don't talk about matters you don't really know about, as it can make you look foolish! Discharge Consent means you can put pollutants into any water environment up to an agreed level which is set at human health levels. Suggest you do some Googling on Lethal and sublethal doses to human health. Then look at the health impacts of sublethal bioaccumulation of lead, zinc, copper, cadmium, pcbs, et al. Then tell us all what you find and that it hasn’t harmed humans over the last 100 years and continues to harm even now. Then do some more Gooling on lower life forms in the aquatic environment and the impacts a sublethal dose set for human health does on them. Hydrocarbons runoff can be managed to virtually a nil input if the political will and money is there. Your lassie far attitude to environmental impacts of toxins stinks and thankfully the vast majority of people don’t share it and are more enlightened than you. Else we’d be living in a swiling toxic soup of an environment!
davieboy on 15/02/2014 13:56:17
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Like I said don't talk about matters you don't really know about, as it can make you look foolish! Discharge Consent means you can put pollutants into any water environment up to an agreed level which is set at human health levels. Suggest you do some Googling on Lethal and sublethal doses to human health. Then look at the health impacts of sublethal bioaccumulation of lead, zinc, copper, cadmium, pcbs, et al. Then tell us all what you find and that it hasn’t harmed humans over the last 100 years and continues to harm even now. Then do some more Gooling on lower life forms in the aquatic environment and the impacts a sublethal dose set for human health does on them. Hydrocarbons runoff can be managed to virtually a nil input if the political will and money is there. Your lassie far attitude to environmental impacts of toxins stinks and thankfully the vast majority of people don’t share it and are more enlightened than you. Else we’d be living in a swiling toxic soup of an environment! Oooh aren't we the big bright boy. ..Typical watermelon and sanctimonious with it! No doubt you agree the buffoon of a Green party spokes women who wants all climate sceptical advisors taken out of position of authority from Government??
mick b on 15/02/2014 14:25:38
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Oooh aren't we the big bright boy. ..Typical watermelon and sanctimonious with it! No doubt you agree the buffoon of a Green party spokes women who wants all climate sceptical advisors taken out of position of authority from Government?? Calm down davieboy, As a new (ish) FM member please bear in mind that this is a friendly fishing forum not a facebook or whatever. All we do on here is exchange our experiences and views, not make personal attacks just because another member disagrees with our post. .
geoffmaynard on 15/02/2014 15:16:53
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Calm down davieboy, As a new (ish) FM member please bear in mind that this is a friendly fishing forum not a facebook or whatever. All we do on here is exchange our experiences and views, not make personal attacks just because another member disagrees with our post. And he's probably unaware TBO's credentials... even if he can be an infuriating SOB sometimes, he's usually right! :-) As for the climate change deniers - I certainly don't think we should have any in the EA, let alone in charge of what happens to it all over the country.
davieboy on 15/02/2014 15:59:55
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Calm down davieboy, As a new (ish) FM member please bear in mind that this is a friendly fishing forum not a facebook or whatever. All we do on here is exchange our experiences and views, not make personal attacks just because another member disagrees with our post. . Apologies to all concerned;) ---------- Post added at 08:59 ---------- Previous post was at 08:51 ---------- And he's probably unaware TBO's credentials... even if he can be an infuriating SOB sometimes, he's usually right! :-) As for the climate change deniers - I certainly don't think we should have any in the EA, let alone in charge of what happens to it all over the country. Every sceptic I know has never denied there's a climate and it changes! a sad attempt to tar people with Holocaust deniers isn't it? to silence dissenters of the consensus..if they can ever be such a thing in science.
geoffmaynard on 15/02/2014 17:23:10
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Every sceptic I know has never denied there's a climate and it changes! a sad attempt to tar people with Holocaust deniers isn't it? to silence dissenters of the consensus..if they can ever be such a thing in science. True-ish Davie. But when 98% of expert scientific opinion agrees on something, the other 2% are wrong, 99.999 times out of 100. The IPCC IPCC - Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has a carbon/oil fuel funded group of scientists in loud denial but it's a tiny amount. There IS a consensus
mick b on 15/02/2014 18:04:47
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Latest news is the the jetstream is moving out of our way....keep your fingers crossed that the snows affecting the US don't replace the rain....
barbelboi on 15/02/2014 18:10:53
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Latest news is the the jetstream is moving out of our way....keep your fingers crossed that the snows affecting the US don't replace the rain.... That's not possible Mick, anything from that direction will warm over the Atlantic and fall as rain (as now) - we get our snow from the North and East. PS Watched Tight Lines earlier with Clayton and Lindsay chatting about the floods on the LIF.................
davieboy on 15/02/2014 20:33:02
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True-ish Davie. But when 98% of expert scientific opinion agrees on something, the other 2% are wrong, 99.999 times out of 100. The IPCC IPCC - Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has a carbon/oil fuel funded group of scientists in loud denial but it's a tiny amount. There IS a consensus If were you I would look in to the so called 98% and see what actually these 98% where, I think you'll find it was a survey in 2009 American Geophysical Union (AGU) This the a break down of how the 98% of expert opinion from a link survey consisting of an intentionally brief two-minute, two question online survey sent to 10,257 earth scientists by two researchers at the University of Illinois. Of the about 3.000 who responded, 82% answered “yes” to the second question, which like the first, most people I know would also have agreed with. Then of those, only a small subset, just 77 who had been successful in getting more than half of their papers recently accepted by peer-reviewed climate science journals, were considered in their survey statistic. That “98% all scientists” referred to a laughably puny number of 75 of those 77 who answered “yes” So you see the 98% figure isn't really 98% of climate scientists in the world just a tiny amount as you put it !I could post up some comments from climate scientists and show what they think of Michael Manns famous Hockey Stick..not very flattering is all i'll say!! Yes you are right these climate scientists are and have been funded by oil company etc and yet every time a sceptic comes along and destroys a piece of (cough) science(Climate Audit is good at this) they have come out with, shout of big oil is funding climate sceptic get shouted!!! how strange? ---------- Post added at 13:33 ---------- Previous post was at 13:26 ---------- That's not possible Mick, anything from that direction will warm over the Atlantic and fall as rain (as now) - we get our snow from the North and East. PS Watched Tight Lines earlier with Clayton and Lindsay chatting about the floods on the LIF................. Where do you think the air that has brought snow to wales and Scotland has come from? model runs from a couple of days ago where show the -5 and -10 isotherm coming across the Atlantic, the air has been so cold in North America/Canada this is what fueling our storms.
barbelboi on 15/02/2014 20:40:17
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If were you I would look in to the so called 98% and see what actually these 98% where, I think you'll find it was a survey in 2009 American Geophysical Union (AGU) This the a break down of how the 98% of expert opinion from a link survey consisting of an intentionally brief two-minute, two question online survey sent to 10,257 earth scientists by two researchers at the University of Illinois. Of the about 3.000 who responded, 82% answered “yes” to the second question, which like the first, most people I know would also have agreed with. Then of those, only a small subset, just 77 who had been successful in getting more than half of their papers recently accepted by peer-reviewed climate science journals, were considered in their survey statistic. That “98% all scientists” referred to a laughably puny number of 75 of those 77 who answered “yes” So you see the 98% figure isn't really 98% of climate scientists in the world just a tiny amount as you put it !I could post up some comments from climate scientists and show what they think of Michael Manns famous Hockey Stick..not very flattering is all i'll say!! Yes you are right these climate scientists are and have been funded by oil company etc and yet every time a sceptic comes along and destroys a piece of (cough) science(Climate Audit is good at this) they have come out with, shout of big oil is funding climate sceptic get shouted!!! how strange? ---------- Post added at 13:33 ---------- Previous post was at 13:26 ---------- Where do you think the air that has brought snow to wales and Scotland has come from? model runs from a couple of days ago where show the -5 and -10 isotherm coming across the Atlantic, the air has been so cold in North America/Canada this is what fueling our storms. Once again you need to do a bit of research.................... Will the UK get America's Big Freeze and snow? - ITV News
cg74 on 15/02/2014 21:20:37
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Don't knock the Environment Agency. The Environment Agency are only a Statutory advisor to the Local Councils. The EA don't make planning decisions, they are just a consultee. Its up to the Local Council if they take the advice the EA provides or ignore it. The Local Councils have the final say on what is built in their area. The EA do provide a Flood Risk Map to Local Councils and a Flood Risk Assessment should be submitted with a planning application. The EA recommend the use of their Sequential Test to planning applications in flood zones, however this is only a recommendation not a statutory regulation. If a Local Council gives planning consent nobody has right of appeal. If a Local Council rejects an application only the Developer has right of appeal. If a Local Council turns down an application it can go to a Public Inquiry where the Planning Inspector listens to presentations from objectors and makes the final decision. It should be remembered that EA has lost a lot of staff over the past six years which this has had a serious impact on what they can or cannot do. They now don't have the capacity to look at all planning applications and have to be more selective in the work they undertake. In many cases the EA are relying on standard advice to local Councils rather than responding to each individual application. The EA have also been instructed by Government to 'seek a positive solutions-focused approach' meaning they must look for solutions rather than raise objections (irrespective of the reason). The bottom line is that the EA is a Government body, and if the Government instructs them to do something (or do nothing at all) they must obey or suffer drastic restructuring! . I really don't know whether to laugh or cry at this post! "Its up to the Local Council if they take the advice the EA provides or ignore it." From experience here lies the crux of the problem; The bloody EA do and say f*** all, I'm currently in the process of pursuing a couple complaints with the EA regarding their complete and utter incompetence at dealing with Planning Applications. Throughout the complaints procedure the EA have shown nothing but ineptitude, with a baffling level contradictions , mistruths and facts that are factually incorrect. Also, strangely enough nigh on every correspondence has been dealt by a different person. All the agency seems hell bent on is denying everything. As for dredging well its always has served the Levels and since the stopping of dredging by the EA in the early 90's!! well here we are farms and house's flooded out ,now I am not saying even with dredging flooding wouldn't occurred it would just not to the degree it has! dredging is not a yearly occurrence, once done it should not be done for many years to come (depending on surrounding land use) and rivers do recover if dredging was/is so destructive how come we yearn to have fishing like our fathers and grandfather days...when dredging was a common sight??. question is what come first businesses, home, farms or wetland habitat, bird sanctuary's All dredging would've achieved is to flood areas downstream of the current affected region. You see, there are a multitude of factors responsible for the magnitude of this flood. When the flooding first started it coincided with huge tides and a tidal surge created by high winds. So is it better to flood a town the size of Bridgwater in an attempt to save a few farms and a couple hundred house? When in all likelihood they'd of flooded anyway? Just take a look at the names of two villages that keep appearing on the news; Muchelney (The Increasingly Great Island) and Moorland, hmmm tells me something - Do you need me to explain........?
davieboy on 15/02/2014 21:55:24
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Once again you need to do a bit of research.................... Will the UK get America's Big Freeze and snow? - ITV News No don't think so bud! never said we get their frezzing weather:wh I said where do you think the air came from that gave Scotland Wales their snow! it came from north American continent!:wh read next time :j And linking a news outlet is hardly research is it:omg:..well maybe for you! ---------- Post added at 14:55 ---------- Previous post was at 14:37 ---------- I really don't know whether to laugh or cry at this post! "Its up to the Local Council if they take the advice the EA provides or ignore it." From experience here lies the crux of the problem; The bloody EA do and say f*** all, I'm currently in the process of pursuing a couple complaints with the EA regarding their complete and utter incompetence at dealing with Planning Applications. Throughout the complaints procedure the EA have shown nothing but ineptitude, with a baffling level contradictions , mistruths and facts that are factually incorrect. Also, strangely enough nigh on every correspondence has been dealt by a different person. All the agency seems hell bent on is denying everything. All dredging would've achieved is to flood areas downstream of the current affected region. You see, there are a multitude of factors responsible for the magnitude of this flood. When the flooding first started it coincided with huge tides and a tidal surge created by high winds. So is it better to flood a town the size of Bridgwater in an attempt to save a few farms and a couple hundred house? When in all likelihood they'd of flooded anyway? Just take a look at the names of two villages that keep appearing on the news; Muchelney (The Increasingly Great Island) and Moorland, hmmm tells me something - Do you need me to explain........? Please do, you seem to know so much!
cg74 on 15/02/2014 22:05:58
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Please do, you seem to know so much! They is both, errrm, wet places!! :wh:D
davieboy on 15/02/2014 22:23:19
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I bow to your superior knowledge:rolleyes:
barbelboi on 15/02/2014 22:50:12
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davieboy - that was just one outlet from many to keep it simple - nothing personal but your responses so far from various threads are somewhat............................. (I'll leave you to it)
cg74 on 15/02/2014 23:07:42
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.................... (I'll leave you to it) Nooooooo, don't, he'll only go and ask me to fill in the blanks!:D
mick b on 16/02/2014 11:04:25
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Quote: Originally Posted by barbelboi .................... (I'll leave you to it) Nooooooo, don't, he'll only go and ask me to fill in the blanks!:D Comeon Davieboy, you gotta laugh at that one....:D
davieboy on 16/02/2014 21:57:58
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Oooh yeah splitting my sides:rolleyes: if you have some thing to say,say it don't fanny around:confused:
tiinker on 17/02/2014 08:51:33
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They just had a woman on the BBC news moaning about to little to late she lives on Ham Island in the middle of the river Thames. What the hell do these people expect should not be living there in the first place as far as I am concerned.
Peter Jacobs on 17/02/2014 09:34:54
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I went for a drive up the valley from Durrington to Upavon yesterday looking for a pub' that was open and had hot food. Most of the pubs were either closed or had 3 or 4 inches of water in their car parks, so the Ship at Upavon was full to bursting point as it was actually open. The problem in the valley now is that not only is the river full and over the banks in many places but the springs have burst due to saturation and are flooding areas well away from the river. We ended up in Wilton at the Pembroke Arms having spent 90 minutes driving in weird conditions. Still the lunch was very good . . . . .
The bad one on 17/02/2014 15:33:44
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Oh to live in the rainy NW of England eh! :D Checked river site for the Ribble Sat Evening after a Txt from a mate asking was I fishing. 3.1 m and peaked in the headwaters at 9 00pm. That’s 3/5th of the channel up. May be was my reply. Checked a couple of weather sites to see the rain forecast, which gave a dry 24 hour period. Second txt defo going river should by 3 00pm Sunday, only have .75m on and dropping. On arrival my prediction was correct at .75m, by the close of fishing 8 30 pm and 4 chub to the good, the river had dropped by another .4m and just about perfect, as it will be today for anyone who goes on it. It might rain a lot in the NW all the time but our rivers know how to cope with the flood waters and get rid of it without flooding peoples homes too often. You’re the very Bad One from a dry and rarely flooded NW of England :D:D


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