River Thames conservationists bid for £2 million lotto cash

The history of the River Thames is attempting to be preserved by a group of conservationists from the Berks, Bucks and Oxon wildlife trust. They hope their bid to highlight the wildlife, ancestry and history around the upper River Thames is successful so that future generations are able to enjoy the river just as it is today.

The Heritage lottery funding money up for grabs is part of the reconnect project run by the organisation. The £2 million worth of lottery funding would be spent by the wildlife trust on the stretch of river through Gloucestershire, Lechlade-on-Thames, Oxfordshire and Sandford-on-Thames. The money will also go towards community projects like youth facilities and also preserving the walking and fishing activities along the river.

Although the charity will not know of the result until October of this year, they are said to be very confident of their bid.

A generous and ever-giving resource

As we all know the river is a fantastic resource not just for the local community but also visitors to the area. It is hoped that by securing the lottery money the charity will be able to keep it that way.

We spoke with the organiser of the bid, Wendy Tobitt, who enthused to us the charity’s plans and hopes for their particular stretch of the oldest river in England. She had this to say;

The River Thames is a great natural resource for everyone, we plan to hold new workshops for visitors and community, alongside guided walks aimed at helping reconnect people with what really is a great natural resource.

Sometimes people do not really see what is in front of their eyes. The river tens plays host to a multitude of different animals and wildlife. Our hopes would be to educate people on things they wouldn’t have known or that are perhaps hidden.

Of course the River Thames was a transport hub for many towns around the area. This included the town of Lechlade, where the booming wool trade originated. They plan on documenting this as well as other historical facts about the area.

It is hoped by the charity that they will also be able to include work by the poet Edward Thomas and William Morris who both respectively lived close by to the river within the project.

As mentioned a decision will be made in October with the environmental agency, conservation board and Thames water involved with the project. We will cause be posting updates here so please check back for more on the upper river Thames conservationists bid.