Some photos from the CAC archive
Including Hubert Ashman fishing in Monkton Park and Bob Taylor with a net of bream from below town bridge, probably both in the early 1990s, with the others old pics of the river back to the late 19th century.
Both gentlemen were long term active members during their lifetimes with Hubert holding a position in the Club for many years. Bob was a keen match angler and so we have the Bob Taylor trophy in tribute to him which is fished for each year.
Chippenham Radial gate replacement Have your say before the 6th June Deadline
A copy of the EA newsletter about the radial gate replacement project in Chippenham is pasted below. It is really important that anglers put forward their views to the EA project team to ensure our sport is properly represented. Option 2 in particular will have a huge negative impact on fishing on the town stretches back up to Sea Cadets.
Chippenham River Improvement Project EA Newsletter April 2023
Replacement of Chippenham radial gate and river corridor improvement
The Chippenham radial gate and weir is nearing the end of its working life. The Environment Agency are looking to work in collaboration with other organisations and landowners to look at options for replacing the gate and improving the River Avon through Chippenham.
Following major flooding in 1960, the river channel through the town centre was significantly modified, generally making it wider and deeper. This included the construction of the Chippenham Gate (radial sluice gate with weir and fish pass). Chippenham Gate was constructed at the same time as several other sluice gates on the River Avon, including Twerton and Pulteney gates in Bath.
The purpose of the radial gate is to retain upstream water levels during low and medium flows whilst enabling high flows to pass through the structure, preventing an increase in flood risk. The water level is retained at an artificial level upstream for amenity purposes, there is not a flood risk benefit from retaining this water level.
The radial gate has however become increasingly unreliable and is nearing the end of its working life. With the gate in its current condition, there is a risk that the structure could fail. The gate opens currently due to water levels lifting floats within chambers alongside the gate, there are no motors to allow it to be manually operated. If the gate was to fail to open during high flows this would lead to a large increase in flood risk to both residential and non-residential properties in Chippenham.
Whilst the gate could just be replaced with a newer structure there is the opportunity to provide additional benefits over a wider area within Chippenham.
Looking at the Options…Please attached photos.
The draft plans for the replacement of the gate and the wider river corridor, are being developed in collaboration with stakeholders and landowners. As part of this opportunities are being investigated to improve the river upstream of the gate, to provide a watercourse that is more natural, whilst still ensuring the same level of flood protection can be provided. It may also be possible to improve the ecological and amenity value of the river. This will create benefits for the town, and wildlife along the river creating a more natural environment to enjoy in Chippenham.
The project team are looking to identify a preferred option in summer 2023; produce outline designs by end of 2023; and create detailed designs in 2024.
They hope the construction of the project will be in 2025/26.
Have your say!
We are very pleased to be able to join with our other partners on the Chippenham One Plan consultation. This consultation is to help inform a Chippenham Town Centre Masterplan to help boost the local economy, enhance the environment and celebrate the town’s heritage. Creating a River Park is a key part of the Masterplan, and replacing/removing the existing sluice gate and weir form a key component of this.
As part of this consultation we will be presenting to the town council and other stakeholder groups, and members of the project team will also be available at the public drop in events, which are:
Thursday 27th April – 18:00 to 19:00 – online webinar(joining details TBC)
Thursday 11th May – 9:00 to 18:00 – Borough Parade
Saturday 13th May – 9:00 to 13:00 – Olympiad leisure centre
Friday 19th May – 9:30 to 14:00 – Chippenham Library
Please do let us know your thoughts on our options, or other factors we should be considering, by either coming to meet us in person, responding to the main public consultation, or emailing us directly. The main consultation closes on 6th June.
You can visit: www.wiltshire.gov.uk/ChippenhamOnePlan or scan the QR code in the photos
As the project progresses we will be keen to hear you views, we will be looking to hold some engagement events to share updates of the project and to undertake public consultation.
If you would like more information on the project or if you know of anyone that would like to receive these newsletters please contact: email@example.com
From the Archive
More from the CAC archive. One is a newspaper clipping about donations the club made during WW1 and the others are the minutes for m the first club meeting in 1894! If anyone can de-
cypher them please let us know😀
Chippenham Angling Club One Plan Submission
Below is the Club submission to the Council with reference to the Chippenham one Plan especially about the radial gate replacement
1 There appears to be a wish to remove cars from the town centre but also encourage retail/office/visitors. They won’t come if they can't park so this needs to be accounted for and does not appear to be included.
2 The river options are very concerning. Replacing the gate with a similar system will provide some flood management both above and below the weir. Any other option will cause potential further extensive flooding downstream (which was mitigated by the weir this winter) plus almost complete loss of water upstream in times of drought. The current situation due to the failure of the weir above Kellaways and the impact upstream of that is a good example of what might happen
3 If either of the non weir replacement options are chosen the river levels will be significantly lower than at present at best and will remove any water based amenity (Sea Scouts, Sailing Club, Chippenham Angling) as there is no guarantee of minimum water levels for any of these activities plus the bank steepness with lower water will make it impossible for most people but particularly disabled citizens to access the water and difficult for young children with their parents/carers, particularly in the Golf Course area.
4 What evidence is there that there is a problem with the ecology now? By changing the river level and flow it will just change the ecology, not necessarily improve and it could get worse with low water levels as many species of plants and fish require a certain depth of water to survive. The is also a potential issue with weed overgrowth if the flow/level is low as there wont be enough volume of water to control it. These issues will be exacerbated in the summer due to lower rainfall.
5 I understand the Hydrology study to establish exact water Summer and Winter water levels at fixed points along the length of the river Avon in question and the resulting width of the remaining river channel has not been completed so how can the public be expected to comment without the full facts . Further the Environmental Impact study required has also not been completed, and is still " Work in Progress "
6 The examples given of how the river is and might look are completely different environments to that of Chippenham plus it is known that the Lyon one failed completely in the first heavy rains
7 The plan is not a conducive proposition to entice prospective retailers or leisure companies. High street retail is in decline as people shop online and leisure activities need parking. Therefore the Council will have to find the money out of an already stretched budget, which has more immediate needs for expenditure.