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Denis Marshall Pickles
Friday, October 14, 2016 11:20
Holme Beck
Living away from Sutton, I don't expect to see reference to my home village of Sutton when I open a national newspaper, but that is what happened on Tuesday. I was having lunch out and as I was on my own, I bought a newspaper to read and keep myself amused between courses, the paper being Britain's First and only Concise Quality Newspaper 'I'. I had never before perused a copy of the publication but I was pleasantly surprised, especially because it cost only 50 pence - definitely an attraction for a Yorkshireman! But it was the article. On page 33 captioned 'Yorkshire calls in Stream Team to Tackle Pollution' which caught my eye. Three columns of well written script telling about measures being taken by several groups to restore the quality of the beck and bring back fish, insects and birds. The article carries a photograph of Stuart Minnikin, a local lad who has made the big time as a fly fisherman - an ex international who has fished world wide and who has returned to his roots to help out with the restoration project. There he is standing in Eastburn Beck holding aloft a brown trout which he has caught in the stretch of beck alongside Lyndhurst Wood (I'm sure it was called Horsfall's Wood when I was a lad!). It would seem that a partial answer to restoring the beck is to 'notch' the half a dozen weirs which dam the beck between Glusburn Bridge and Eastburn, Perhaps it is the measures already taken that have resulted in the return of crayfish. I never recall seeing any such creatures in my youth. But then industry was operating at it's peak, drawing off beck water and polluting the stream. An interesting article!
Terry Longbottom
Saturday, October 15, 2016 10:50
hi Denis you are right, the River Holme never did hold any of the English crayfish, I suspect the ones now in residence are the American signal crayfish, like the mink and the grey squirrel imported by someone for financial gain released and now decimating the native residents,
the brown trout has been active with the weirs in place for many years, the weirs formed large areas of relatively still deeper water retained in summer droughts. I fear the cleft in the structure may be start of the end of the weir's in the winter floods
the weirs stabilized the river bed, movement of material downstream may have ramifications.

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