Registered Charity Number: 1037414

Trustees March Meeting Update. March 2019.

March 8th, 2019 in News by admin

The Trust has been able to work throughout the winter months uninterrupted by adverse weather conditions. This has meant though that human actions or inactivity has been a major source of irritation especially with our Cinderhill Tar Pit Project. We have been busy in Derbyshire with three projects and supporting the work carried out at Waingroves Community Woodland.

Our work has also taken us to Devon and Wheal Augusta near Exeter to see progress on several trials and set up new ones on the abandoned tailings lagoons there.

Work on archaeological research regarding the Trent Valley around Newark is expanding with not just water and environmental conditions during the English Civil War but pre-stone age and Palaeolithic wetlands development.

The Trust has also raised some funding via cleaning up a couple of research sites for a consultancy. The mess caused by the wet; poor traction for unsuitable diggers and tyres. We left the sites as they should be though some work is still to be done.

1 Cinderhill.

The site has been found to be responding to our trial (University of Nottingham February Report to Harworth) of compost and willow earlier than expected, the wet periods over the last few months have allowed the bacteria to enter the tar surface sooner and we haver witnessed petroleum emulsions and bacteria breaking up the oils.

Acidity has been found to be variable across the main tar pit at depths of a few centimetres and at a metre or more. The surface of the tar is now stable and showing strong indications that it is breaking down to a ‘crumb’ texture. It is possible to, in places, dig through with a spade rather than having to punch into it with a bar. The holes now do not close up as previously and stay open for some weeks.

Replanting some areas where cuttings of willow failed are taking place from the 4thMarch with an additional layer of mushroom compost placed across the surface. This will make up for those lost during last summer’s dry spell.

2 Cinderhill Access and other issues.

Since November a new lock has kept us from accessing the site from the track we had been using since the project started. Negotiations have been protracted but now a key was to be made available for the new lock. This though has not materialised as the track’s owner has lost it. Access will from the 25thFebruary be gained by putting a new lock in place by ourselves.

The week of 18thFebruary has been marked by the return of trespassers who have broken the tar pit site gate. The police have had to be informed. There has also been evidence of motorcycle activity outside the perimeter fencing. No damage has been done to the willows.

Regular security visits are being carried out at irregular times of the day.

3 Wheal Augusta.

The abandoned lead and barites mine which is the location for several trials related to highly acidic minewater and tailings stabilisation was visited with the site owner. There are a number of interesting site developments planned with trials of Vetiver grass on both the dam walls and on the surface of the ponds themselves.

4 Vetiver Trial.

Vetiver trials we have been trying out in Birmingham have not come to much, the plants having failed though kept at a good temperature throughout the period.

5 Crich.

The arsenic contamination of the rivers Derwent and Amber in Derbyshire is being frustrating as the location of the material is being hard to find. Samples of trees growing on landfill locations about the area have tested negative. Further work is planned over the next months.

6 A Winning.

The minewater treatment site at A Winning in Derbyshire is still coursing the Environment Agency concern with regard to the elevated chloride levels being discharge to the Normanton Brook. The Coal Authority are looking to wetland treatment methods to find a solution. The Trust will be involved with the work going forward.

7 Turkey.

On a short visit to Turkey, 17th-22ndFebruary visited a small stream 15 km to the north of Antalia, the water quality was obviously high, caddis fly lava were present as were an abundance of young fish including trout. Down stream it passes over a set of waterfalls were by then pollution from agriculture and rural sewage downgrades the water quality.

I had the chance of looking over the sewage treatment works for Antalya, a huge and modern piece of engineering that benefited from EU funding.

Harvey Wood

 

 

Author: admin

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