Dr. Dylan Bright, Director of the West Country Rivers Trust was honoured by the Salmon & Trout Association (S&TA)

Dr. Dylan Bright, Director of the West Country Rivers Trust was honoured by the Salmon & Trout Association (S&TA), when it presented him with its £4,000 Annual Award for Best Fisheries Project with Environmental Benefits, in recognition of the outstanding work achieved during the Cornwall Rivers Project.

S&TA Chairman, James Carr made the presentation at the Awards Dinner during the 15th International Salmonid Conference in Newcastle on Tuesday, October 17th. The Conference, co-sponsored by S&TA and organised by the Association of Rivers Trusts (ART), brought together a distinguished panel of speakers from several Northern hemisphere countries with an interest in salmon, sea trout, trout and charr.

The Cornwall Rivers Project, spanning ten river catchments, has encouraged land managers to accept that their rivers, including small headwater streams, are an asset and that their habitats can be improved by a range of relatively simple and cost effective means within an overall Catchment Sensitive Farming programme.

Improvements to water quality and river habitat achieved through the project have brought nearly 40 new fisheries into existence, providing more game angling opportunities in Cornwall and knock-on benefits to farmers and local communities from increased angler spend in their areas.

This supports S&TA’s policy that the economic benefits derived from increased angler visits are a major payback for investment in river rehabilitation schemes.

Comments S&TA Director Paul Knight; “the presentation of this award, and co-sponsorship of the Conference, marks a continuing close working relationship between S&TA and ART. The excellent work undertaken by the burgeoning number of rivers trusts throughout the UK and Ireland is proving just what can be achieved by dedicated management and conservation initiatives backed up by sound fisheries and water-based science. The resulting enhancement of river habitats is already showing a marked angling improvement in many areas, providing welcome income for farmers and rural communities. This is a win-win situation that shows what can be achieved through partnerships and the S&TA is delighted to be involved with, and supporting such direct action initiatives.”