LOCAL MP WELCOMES BIG STEP FORWARD IN IMPROVED MONITORING OF RIVER LODDON

Local MP Maria Miller has warmly welcomed the installation of two new flow gauges on the River Loddon, which will improve the Environment Agency’s ability to monitor the health of the River more effectively in future.

Maria said: “I am delighted that these new flow gauges have been installed on the River Loddon, which I have been campaigning for for some time. This enhanced monitoring will help ensure that any future levels of housebuilding do not lead to a deterioration in the water quality.”

“It is great to see the Borough Council and the Environment Agency working together to protect and restore this important River in Basingstoke.”

Maria has been campaigning for a number of years for improved monitoring of the River and was delighted to watch the Environment Agency making final calibrations to one of two flow gauges at Old Basing on Friday 20 March.

The flow gauges have been installed at two locations in Old Basing, with the total cost of £50,000 being funded by Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council.

The gauges will provide accurate information on the level and rate of flow of water in the Loddon, which used with other environmental data will enable better assessment and monitoring of the ecological condition of the river. This will help with projects to enhance water quality and plant and animal species, particularly fish.

Maria met up with Environment Agency experts at the site by Pyotts Bridge. She was joined by Cllr Hayley Eachus, the Borough Councillor with lead responsibility for the Environment, as well as Amanda Ingham from the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust, the Catchment Host for the River Loddon Catchment Partnership. Representatives from the Gresham Angling Society also attended, including Dr Alan Gibberd, an Old Basing resident.