Archive for May, 2011


For the last few years we have participated in the Marine Conservation Society’s (MCS) Beachwatch national campaign to monitor what rubbish is on our beaches on the weekend of 17/18th September. This year we shall be doing the same on Saturday 17th September at 10.00am on Cockleridge, Bigbury on Sea, opposite Bantham, under the direction of Maya Plass (
On Sunday 18th September, Maya will be participating in the Perranporth Triathlon as a fundraising opportunity for the Marine Conservation Society. Maya says “It seemed to be such a good match that the triathlon took place the same weekend as the national Beachwatch marine litter campaign. I hope it will be a valuable opportunity to raise awareness about marine litter and also funds for the work of the”
This is the donation page for anybody interested in supporting Maya’s efforts on behalf of the MCS:
Interestingly, most of our local beaches came out well in the latest MCS survey of beach quality.  Click on the following link for details:-


Dr Anna Harlow of the Environment Agency has issued the following invitation to the public to help improve the water quality of the Avon (river not estuary) –  Avon briefing note.  The so-called Waterbody Information Pack upon which the EA’s most recent assessment of the water quality as only ‘moderate’ is based is available for anybody seeking more information by clicking here – Avon WIP 10.01.11

If you have a view about the content of the WIP and its conclusions, please leave a comment on this website and maybe we can start a useful debate.



If you think willow working is easy, you should give it a try!  This collection of brave souls did exactly that under Don Gaskin’s supervision on 11 May and what a mess most of us made of it!  Fortunately, Don managed to rescue most of our efforts with the results displayed above (thanks to Mike Wynne-Powell for the professional photograph – double click on the photo for a larger image).  The photograph represents the culmination of a very interesting afternoon in the willow bed at Duke’s Mill and at Rosie Barrett’s barn, learning about the history of the beds and the craft of willow working.  Many thanks to Rosie for her hospitality and to Jean Marsh for the tea and cake!  A really enjoyable day, blessed by the ACA’s customary fine weather.

Boat crime – May 2011

This message relates to Police Log No. 544 of 9th May 2011.  Over the past month numerous boat engines and other marine paraphernalia have been stolen from various locations.  The criminals would seem to have a good knowledge of marine engines and their fittings.  The size of the engines stolen on occasions means transport must have been used.  The crimes are not only occurring on the water but at storage locations.  This is a timely reminder for the boating community to review their security.  Should you see anything suspicious please contact the Police with any information on 08452 777444 quoting Log No. 544 of 9th May 2011. Thank you.

Please phone us with any information on 08452 777 444.



From 1 March to 31 July  

To protect ground nesting birds,

dogs must be kept on a short lead (i.e. <2m) on

open access land.

The countryside around the Avon  is a great place to exercise dogs, but it’s every owner’s duty to make sure their dog is not a danger or nuisance to farm animals, wildlife or other people.  Recently, we have received reports of dogs worrying birds around the estuary.

  • By law, you must control your dog so that it does not disturb or scare farm animals or wildlife.  On most areas of open country and common land, known as ‘access land’ you must keep your dog on a short lead between 1 March and 31 July, and all year round near farm animals.


  • You do not have to put your dog on a lead on public paths, as long as it is under close control. But as a general rule, keep your dog on a lead if you cannot rely on its obedience. By law, farmers are entitled to destroy a dog that injures or worries their animals.


As the weather improves and use of the river and its estuary grows during the holiday season, the ACA Committee offers the following commonsense reminder for looking after your waterway, its flora and fauna, taken from Natural England’s publications and based on the Waterways Code (, the Countryside Code ( and the Countryside and Rights of Way Act (2000) which has the force of law behind it:-

  1. protect the waterway environment – keep noise to a minimum and don’t damage the vegetation or banks
  2. take home everything that you brought with you, and leave the site as you found it
  3. never dump rubbish, sewage or oily bilge water into the water or onto the bank
  4. clean up after your dog and keep it under control i.e. on a 2m lead from 1st March-31st July – please avoid frightening any wildlife, especially ground nesting birds or chicks (many people exercise their dogs on the Avon Estuary at low tide).  Click here for the official sign! –  Keep dogs on leads
  5. don’t light fires
  6. report pollution, fly tipping or fish in distress to the Environment Agency  0800 807060 (24 hrs)
  7. report birds or animals in distress to the RSPCA 0990 555 999 (24 hrs)

I’ve also been asked to add some nautical advice i.e. “pass oncoming boats port to port” with the comment that this has nothing to do with the stuff that comes in a bottle!  If in doubt, keep right!

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