Great working relationships with landowners in our catchment is key to the work that we do and we are fully dependent on their support to deliver our work. We strive to come up with innovative solutions to land management practices and river restoration that are wins for both the landowner and the river.

Here are just a few ways in which we work with landowners to reduce their impact on our rivers:

Riparian Fencing

Fencing can significantly improve habitat that is being damaged by livestock, such as cows or sheep. Livestock kept in fields adjacent to the river trample the river banks and in some instances defecate in the watercourse impacting water quality. This causes erosion to the river banks and widening of the river channel; it also contributes high quantities of fine sediment into the water course which smothers river bed gravels and potential fish spawning locations. An effective measure to prevent the impact of livestock is the installation of fencing. Fencing protects the river banks from livestock trampling, reduces s sediment input and livestock waste from entering the watercourse and allows plants to flourish which help filter sediment, nutrients and runoff. Cattle poaching and subsequent bank erosion have also led to serious declines in populations of the European water vole which depend on bank structure for its refuge.

Soil and crop management

As well as directly working in the river, caring for the area around it is equally as important. BART works with landowners to implement a range of measures to improve topsoil retention and reduce the run-off of fertilisers, pesticides and herbicides. Not only do these measures help to improve the health of our rivers, but they can also reduce landowner’s costs.

River Restoration
Farmyard infrastructure improvements

Water quality can also be impacted by contaminated run-off from farm yards. BART offers farm advisory visits for farmers whenever funding is available. Visits look at a wide range of improvement opportunities that can save farmers time and reduce the risk of pollution incidents. Wherever possible, BART will seek funding to implement measures, or offer advice to help farmers apply for environmental stewardship to cover costs.

River Restoration
River restoration

A major part of our work is helping landowners who have a desire to restore and improve their stretch of river. This might involve improving the quality of fishing or simply to see an increase in biodiversity. To find out more about the type of river restoration work we do, click here.

If you are a landowner that is interested in working with BART, or if you are simply looking for advice, please contact us on