The rivers in west sussex-Chalk Streams | Sussex Wildlife Trust

A chalk river or stream is watercourse which flows across or is influenced by chalk bedrock. They are usually fed by underground or seasonal springs and often have 'winterbourne' stretches in their headwaters which run dry in late summer. England has most of the chalk rivers in Europe. There are only around 35 chalk rivers between 20 to 90 km long in the whole of the UK. Chalk geology is rare worldwide.

The rivers in west sussex

The rivers in west sussex

The rivers in west sussex

The only restriction was that cuts could rlvers be The rivers in west sussex through gardens or enclosed grounds. Shopham Tivers. Stanbridge Stream [68]. A widening in the modern river, close to the dismantled Midhurst branch of the London, Brighton and South Coast Railwaymarks the site of Ladymead Lock, with a weir to the south and the lock structure to the north. The original, old name, was the Scir or Scire, a Saxon word meaning "clear" "bright" and describes the then pebbly waters. In Wikipedia Add links. Retrieved 28 March

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Environment Agency. Environment Agency. A second option involved raising The rivers in west sussex banks on all of the meadows, and constructing a separate sewer to carry surplus water from them to the sea, leaving The rivers in west sussex main river largely unaltered. October Companies House. PulboroughWest Sussex. Tivers wooden drawbridge was built in to carry the coastal road over the river, but this was replaced inwhen a cast iron swing bridge was erected in its place. Despite the navigation being closed, a guide to Midhurst published in advertised that skiffs could Nude straight athletic men hired, and fishing could be enjoyed. The new channel was completed by [27] and drained the Levels so that much of the valley British readers wives online could be reclaimed for pasture. By Aprilthe navigation was open from Lewes to Sheffield Bridge, and some work on increasing the suzsex of the channel had been carried out between there and Hammer Bridge. There are public pathways on both sides of the channel for most of this stretch. Molineux and Johnston bought the land and built a large mill, for which the opening ceremony in July was a grand affair, according to the Sussex Weekly Advertiser. Brandon, P; Short, B Lewes History Group. Source of the Ouse.

The following 10 pages are in this category, out of 10 total.

  • Although none are still operational, many of the buildings which housed the mills still exist, and in some cases, still retain their milling machinery.
  • Great beaches, pretty rivers, steady winds, a plethora of watersports schools and vibrant wind and paddlesports communities make West Sussex one of the best places in Britain to learn kitesurfing, windsurfing, surfing, stand-up paddleboarding SUP , kayaking, sailing and diving.
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  • It rises near Lower Beeding in West Sussex, and flows eastwards and then southwards to reach the sea at Newhaven.
  • From east of Chichester its natural course was south to the sea at Pagham , but the Romans diverted it to flow around the southern walls of Chichester and then west into Chichester Harbour.

Although none are still operational, many of the buildings which housed the mills still exist, and in some cases, still retain their milling machinery. This upper section is also noted for a number of early bridges, which have survived since their construction in the fifteenth, sixteenth and seventeenth centuries.

The lower river, from Midhurst to its junction with the River Arun, has been used for navigation. Boats used the section from the Arun to Fittleworth following improvements made to the Arun in , and after the Arun Navigation was completed in , the Earl of Egremont made the river navigable up to Midhurst by constructing eight locks and some small cuts. The work was completed in , and many of the bridges built at that time still survive.

With the opening of the Mid-Sussex Railway branch to Midhurst in , traffic declined, and commercial use of the river had ceased by the s. Pleasure boats continued to be used on the river for many years, and published accounts of journeys along the decaying navigation appeared in and The navigation was officially abandoned in , after an undergraduate pointed out that it was still a public right of way. The river flows through the South Downs National Park , and is a designated Site of Nature Conservation Importance , in recognition of its value for wildlife.

It supports a wide range of fish, and its upper reaches are the only location in Sussex where native white clawed crayfish can be found. The quality of the water is generally good, and the river is measured at four gauging stations, three on the main channel, and one of the River Lod , just before its junction with the Rother. Water from the underlying Lower Greensand aquifer and the adjacent chalk aquifer helps to maintain the flows during the summer months, despite the fact that large volumes are abstracted from both the aquifers and the river for the public water supply.

Following improvements to the River Arun in , which allowed boats to reach Pallingham, they could also navigate part of the Rother, as far upstream as Fittleworth. The canal engineer William Jessop was asked to survey the river below Petworth Mills in , and was recalled in , when he surveyed it below Midhurst. In the same year, the construction of the Arun Navigation was finished, and in , George Wyndham, 3rd Earl of Egremont , who was based at Petworth House , obtained an Act of Parliament which would enable him to improve the Rother.

The Act also authorised a branch canal to Petworth. Since he owned most of the land adjacent to the river, the precise route of the navigation was not specified, and he was free to improve the channel or make cuts as he saw fit. The only restriction was that cuts could not be made through gardens or enclosed grounds. Compared to most other canals at the time, the charges for using the navigation were low, as the Earl wanted to develop the region rather than make a profit.

The river's lower section, below Midhurst, was made navigable by the construction of the Western Rother Navigation in Traffic consisted of coal transported up-river, with cargoes of timber, corn and Petworth marble in the other direction. This made access to Petworth easier, and the canal ceased to be used. Unlike many canals, where navvies were brought into the neighbourhood to carry out the work, the Earl employed local men on the project, most of them already employed by him, and a clergyman praised him for this when writing in , as it led to much less disruption, but provided increased income for those who worked on the scheme.

Wages rose from 8 or 9 shillings p per week to 14 or 15 shillings p. Traffic declined, and by the s, the navigation was no longer used by commercial boats, although it was not officially abandoned until Despite the navigation being closed, a guide to Midhurst published in advertised that skiffs could be hired, and fishing could be enjoyed.

The boats were hired out by a plumber called William Port, and his business continued to prosper until , when his boathouse burned down. Rowing boats were also available for hire at Coultershaw and Fittleworth. By that time, none of the locks were workable, and boats had to be carried around them. In , part of the river bank near Todham Lock, which bordered the Cowdray estate of the Earl of Egmont , had collapsed, and the Earl suggested that Lord Leconfield of Petworth, a successor to the Earl of Egremont, should pay for its repair.

After some disagreement, a compromise was reached, under which the bank was repaired and a floodgate was fitted at the upper end of the lock, with both men paying half of the cost. Lord Leconfield assumed that when the Arun Navigation finally obtained an Act of Abandonment in , his responsibilities for the maintenance of the River Rother had ended. The case was heard in the High Court, at which it was agreed that the navigation was now useless, but that the two men would share the costs of rebuilding the floodgate, after which responsibility for its maintenance would pass to the Earl, who could also dredge the river above the lock.

P Bonthron, who published a book entitled My Holidays on Inland Waterways in , described a journey down the river that he had made with friends in , in a boat hired from William Port at Midhurst. They reached Arundel on the River Arun after two days, from where the boat was sent back to Midhurst by train. The river flows through the South Downs , an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and since , a designated national park. There are two large aquifers in the area, one consisting of chalk, to the south of the river valley, and the other the Lower Greensand Group , underlying the whole of the river.

The aquifers are separated by a Gault Formation , which consists of clay. At the western edge of the region, both the chalk and the gault turn to the north, creating a scarp slope. These led to declines in the populations of the macro-invertebrates which are used to measure the health of a river, but these have subsequently recovered. Flows in the river are swelled by discharges from several sewage treatment works.

The three largest are at Princes Marsh, Petersfield and Ambersham, all of which have outflows between 0. There are also populations of bullhead , eel , lamprey , minnow and stone loach. There has been some concern about declining fish stocks, thought to be partly caused by soil erosion, leading to silt and sediments being deposited on the river bed, which has been exacerbated by low flows in the river.

Parts of the lower river support the same types of fish, but there are areas, particularly immediately upstream of weirs, where the major species are bream , pike and roach , with chubb , dace and perch on the lowest reaches. In order to assist the movement of fish along the river, particularly those that migrate to the headwaters to spawn, fish passes have been constructed around the gauging stations. The only known population of native white clawed crayfish in Sussex is located in the upper reaches of the Rother.

The quality of the water is generally good, helped by the fact that the groundwater in the chalk aquifer is of very high quality. However, some of the small streams in the upper reaches are polluted by discharges of effluent which are not licensed, and there are areas where the water in the aquifer, and hence the river, has raised levels of nitrates , largely caused by agricultural fertilisers.

The Environment Agency has produced improvement plans to address a number of sources of both agricultural and urban pollution. There are many locations at which water is abstracted along the course of the river, including a site in the upper reaches where more than 1. The river takes its name from Rotherbridge , not the other way round. Rotherbridge is derived from the Anglo-Saxon Redrebruge , meaning cattle bridge, [24] which was also the name of the Saxon Hundred or administrative group of parishes.

Before this the river was known as the Scir. The route description has been split into two sections. From its source to Midhurst, the river has powered several mills, but has never been navigable. Below Midhurst, it was navigable until the navigation closed in the s. There were eight locks on this section, some of which bypassed additional water mills. The River Rother rises from several springs near Empshott in Hampshire. The main one supplies watercress beds, before passing under Mill Lane, to the south of the village.

It continues eastwards, to reach Greatham Mill. Now Grade II listed. It is joined by other streams, and turns south to reach Liss railway station. The railway and the river follow the same general route, and the river crosses under the railway five times before reaching Sheet. At the northern edge of the village, the river is joined by the Ashford Stream, and there is another mill.

After passing under the A road , to the east of the village, it reaches Sheet Mill. Tillmore Brook joins from the west, and the course turns to the east. At Durleighmarsh, a hamlet which forms part of the civil parish of Rogate , it passes the ruins of Durford Abbey , a Premonstratensian monastery situated on the north bank.

It is a scheduled ancient monument , and the site includes a threshing barn with a water wheel and associated drive shafts. This mill house is a grade II listed structure, and was built of clunch in The mill itself has been modernised and enlarged, and is not listed. It was restored in It is built of stone, and was restored in the eighteenth century. They were operational until The north mill is a timber-framed building, clad with weatherboarding , dating from the sixteenth century. The south mill was built of coursed stone rubble around Although it has been converted into a house, it still contains two iron waterwheels, one for each mill, and its machinery.

The earliest documentary evidence for the mill dates from An eighteenth century stone and brick bridge with two arches carries Chithurst Lane over the river.

Continuing eastwards, the river is crossed by Iping Bridge at Iping , a narrow stone bridge with five arches dating from the seventeenth century. A mill was recorded there in the Domesday survey , completed in By , there were the remains of a fulling mill at the site, and a wheat-mill and malt-mill, both part of the same building.

It became a paper mill in the eighteenth century, and continued to operate until it was destroyed by fire in Five of them date from the seventeenth century, with one later addition. The mill building has been demolished, but the mill house is a listed structure. After another loop to the north, the river passes between Easebourne to the north east and Midhurst to the south west.

The bridge which carries the A road has two wide arches, and was of ashlar construction. Although this structure is still in situ, it is difficult to see, as a pedestrian bridge has been built on the north west side, attached to the original bridge by cantilevers, and one of the two arches was widened in by the addition of another arch outside it.

The mill carries the date , and the house is of a similar age, although built in two stages. It consists of a medieval fortified house, which is partly ruined, although some of it has been reused. The terminus of the Rother Navigation was on a side stream, at the southern edge of Midhurst. There was a wharf and basin, close to a road which is still called The Wharf, and an ashlar bridge crosses the navigation between the wharf and the junction with the main river.

It was built in , and was restored in to commemorate the silver jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II. There was a lock cut across a loop to the north. The bridge at South Ambersham was built of stone rubble in , with a main arch across the navigation and a smaller arch to the north, which has been repaired with brick. A widening in the modern river, close to the dismantled Midhurst branch of the London, Brighton and South Coast Railway , marks the site of Ladymead Lock, with a weir to the south and the lock structure to the north.

The river at this point runs to the south, and there was a large meander to the west with a weir at its head. The mill stream ran to the east, and the lock was built just to the west of the mill.

The pump is powered by a water wheel, cast at Cocking Foundry , which is 11 feet 3.

East Sussex CC. At Hamsey , a long lock cut crosses the neck of a large meander creating Hamsey Island, [4] home to St Peter's Church, which is situated on a mount. Newhaven Port Authority. The Environment Agency measure the water quality of the river systems in England. The brooks bordering the Glynde, to the east of Ranscombe, were generally at a higher level, but were affected by stagnant water lying on the surface.

The rivers in west sussex

The rivers in west sussex

The rivers in west sussex. About Excavating Pitt-Rivers


River Rother, western, West Sussex, England UK

The River Ouse Corridor comprising over miles of main river and tributaries is an important wildlife site of unique character.

The tributaries of the upper catchment are mainly small forest streams cutting deep sided valleys through wooded countryside. These drain High Weald areas of forest and heathland over a geology of soft sandstones and clays. Though often small and shallow, they are quick to respond to rainfall and in a few hours can be transformed to raging torrents. Some of the middle tributaries are similar, while others are characteristic of lowland streams flowing more slowly over clays and alluvium.

Two of the lower tributaries, the Bevern and Northend Streams are notable in that they are derived from springs rising in the chalk of the South Downs, continuing their journey over greensand and clay in their lower sections. The principal tributary of the Ouse is the River Uck, fed mainly by forest streams and similar in character to the middle reaches of the main river.

The upper and middle reaches of the main river feature a varied riffle and pool system rich in wildlife, but stretches above some of the weirs retain the canal like features of relatively deep and slow flowing water; a legacy from the eighteenth century when the river was modified for navigation. The lower reaches downstream from Sutton Hall Weir are of more uniform depth excluding the weir pools and races , typical of a lowland river traversing an alluvial plain. Below Barcombe Mills the river is tidal with the flow moderated by a half-weir at Hamsey.

The waters support a diversity of plant life including water crowfoot and starwort, both listed in Annexe 1 of the EU Species and Habitats Directive as requiring the designation of a Special Area of Conservation. A vast number of invertebrates thrive in the river and its tributaries including mayflies, willow and alder flies, freshwater shrimps, swan and pea mussels, and some rare types of water beetle to name but a few.

The river supports a thriving population of wild brown trout in its upper reaches and they are found in most tributaries. It is also notable for its migratory brown trout which ascend each year to their spawning grounds in the gravel beds of the tributaries. It contains most species of coarse fish indigenous to the British Isles, including rarer fish such as grayling, barbel, stone loach, river lampreys, and bullheads.

Bullheads are named in Annexe 2 of the Directive and describes as threatened on an international scale. The sea trout are especially notable, as they appear to gain the highest average weight of any population found in the British Isles. Adult fish vary in size from two or three pounds up to fifteen pounds or more.

It is rare for an angler to catch a fish under two pounds and the average is over five pounds. However, the future of our river is constantly under threat from a variety of human activities, not least of which is a proposal to canalise it for the use of motorised pleasure craft.

Inappropriate man made structures, intensive farming methods, weak legislation and lack of investment in conservation all take their toll. The rise in population density of the area leads to an increase in water abstraction and polluting effluents.

Local people and others who value this ecological heritage have expressed concern at the perceived decline of its health. OART believes that this concern can be harnessed, and with appropriate expertise and effort the decline can be halted and reversed. The headwaters of the Sussex Ouse on the Ashown Forest.

The middle Ouse at Isfield. Bullhead Cottus gobio Millers Thumb. The tidal stretches also contain sea fish that can tolerate the lower salt content here: flounder, grey mullet, bass, twaite shad, and sea lampreys. Some of these enter the river to spawn in the brackish water. The habitat rich environment of the River Ouse supports a wide range of bird, mammal, and insect life, including some rare species of butterfly, the endangered water vole, and of course a considerable variety of birds including kingfishers, water rail, reed and sedge warblers, and grey wagtails.

These species thrive in the undisturbed bankside vegetation which provides secluded nesting sites. The Tidal Ouse at Southease. Latest News Comment to protect the marine environment October 7, View all Articles. Pin It on Pinterest.

The rivers in west sussex

The rivers in west sussex