Salix worked with the Sompting Estate, and the Ouse and Adur River Trust to re-naturalise a watercourse, constructing a kilometre of new channel for the Broadwater Brook.
Contaminated culverted brook re-naturalised
The Broadwater Brook in Worthing had been historically culverted for over three quarters of its length, significantly impacting on the natural processes of the brook.
The culverted section received additional contaminated inflows from highways runoff and agricultural land, further degrading the value of the brook and causing the brook to fail on reaching its ecological potential.
An opportunity was identified between the landowner, the Sompting Estate, and the Ouse and Adur River Trust to re-naturalise the watercourse. In 2019, Salix were awarded main contractor for constructing a kilometre of new channel for the Broadwater Brook.
The construction consisted of excavation of a new, sinuous channel through a nearby field which was subsequently hydroseeded and plug planted. Wetland scrapes were created to increase wetland habitat and potential to capture contaminants.
Over 2,400 volunteers assisted with planting the area with wetland plants, wildflowers, hedgerows and trees.
120 species were present prior to works. Since installation, over 507 species have been recorded, significantly improving the ecological habitat and diversity.
In the UK, the total abundance of insect species has declined by over 60% since the 1970s. Renaturalising watercourses such as the Broadwater Brook provide significant opportunities to halt the ecological extinction and increase species resilience to climate change.
The project was made possible by the National Lottery Heritage Fund and is a finalist for the 2021 UK River Prize, run by the River Restoration Centre.
Atkins has worked with Salix on a number of projects, collaborating on design concept, trialling and implementation. We have found their experience valuable in delivering cost effective and environmentally functional solutions.Atkins
We used HydraCX for the first time on a Network Rail project in Chipping Campden. We wanted to establish vegetation growth as quickly as possible on a slope with poor ground conditions without the need for importing topsoil due to possession time constraints. HydraCX provided an excellent growing medium for rapid germination.Carillion Rail
HydraCX gave an immediate impression the embankment was grassed, making it more visually pleasing to our travelling customers. The rapidity of grass growth was exceptional and it added additional strength to the slope surface.Network Rail
Your staff are always friendly, knowledgeable and helpful and we have always been pleased with the service and the quality of the wetland plants and planting services. Technical knowledge on erosion control is also excellent. Keep up the good work!Living Water Ecosystems Ltd
We invited Salix to re-landscape the watercourse through a design and build project. The works to the watercourse were completed within two weeks of starting on site and, despite a number of prolonged heavy rain events both during and after the works, the pre-established coir rolls and pallets all began putting on new growth within a matter of days providing the watercourse with instant channel vegetation and protection to the toe of the banks. The VMax reinforcement used to stabilise the slopes has also prevented any erosion to the sandy soil beneath and has allowed the rapid establishment of grass which wouldn’t have otherwise been possible.South Ribble Council
Excellent overall performance – very approachable and offered a good sustainable solutions to rectify a significant erosion scour to the river foreshore without comprising the existing flood defence. Carried out work to agreed timescale and budget. Certainly would value their future input.Environment Agency, Leeds
We have worked with Salix on a number of projects throughout East Anglia over the last 6 years, and we have always found them to be highly professional and competent. We have used their services as suppliers of quality wetland plants, with a traceable provenance, and as contractors to both supply and plant the wetland plants. In addition we have always relied on the technical advice and knowledge of David Holland, in particular, to help answer queries from our clients regarding wetland planting schemes we have been involved in, this is an added value part of their service, for which we are grateful.UPM Tilhill