Save The Ribble

A blog dedicated to preserving the beauty and delicate ecosystem of the River Ribble, and opposing the Riverworks 'vision' to build a barrage on our River and develop on our riverbanks, floodplains and green spaces, causing damage to wildlife and the environment and increasing the risk of flooding to our homes. Save the Ribble Campaign is not responsible for the content of external blogs or websites which link here.

Thursday, May 04, 2006

Residents Continue to Voice Concerns about Riverworks "Vision" for Ribble and Green Belt

Here are a few more of local residents’ views and comments. To view previous postings of residents’ views go to “Local People Who Care About the Ribble” and “Residents’ Concerns for the Environment” (see links)

‘We enjoy bird-watching, and in the past 12 months have seen the residents herons, cormorants, terns, oyster-catchers, golden-eye duck, grebe and a variety of gulls – and all while walking the dog!
Never in our wildest dreams did we imagine the possibility of use by powered craft, which would totally alter the character of this tranquil area’
Margaret and Tony,

‘It makes me so mad to see our environment continually threatened by constant development’.
Tracey G,

‘As a resident of Avenham, living next to Avenham Park I am totally opposed to development of the opposite bank of the river. I have always been under the impression that the park was created to prevent the development of Preston City Centre across the river and that the presence of a countryside sanctuary so close to the city centre is something that has always made Preston unique.’

‘No to the barrage!’
Dave and Sue,

‘I was born here, and I can see the river from my house. Every day I see the wildlife,and how much pleasure it gives every living thing that encouters it. There is recently a pair of black and white ducks (I don't know the species) and they are just one example of how often new life comes here. I've been led to believe that the Ribble holds species now that only live in good water.
There is no need to change it. It seems the only ones who want change stand to make money from it, and have no appreciation for the beauty and ecology of the river.’

‘I have enjoyed the green fields and nature of penwortham since i moved here 15 years ago. I walk to work each day through countryside and farmland. I see woodpeckers, grebes, rabbits, even if i am lucky, the kingfisher. At the weekends i spend time digging on my allotment, surrounded by peace and nature. If this development goes ahead then everything that makes me contented with where i live will vanish.’

Andy O. of Preston has been photographing this area for the last 6 years. See his great pictures at

‘Do you remember the seal that used to visit the Ribble near Avenham Park about four years ago? It used to come up the river at high tide and feed in the deep waters of Church Delph, the former quarry on the north side of the river close to the Tram Bridge.
When the tide went out it would lie on a long, flat rock and sun bathe, occasionally wiggling its flippers. You could see it best at about 7am and later at night. People used to stroll down to the Tram Bridge to watch and admire it. It wasn't grey really: more a brownish furry colour. Did anyone photograph it?
A friend told me that it had escaped from a zoo in Colwyn Bay (how did she know?) and that its body was later found on the estuary banks near Freckleton.
I still think of the rock as "Seal Rock". If the barrage was built, Seal Rock would be submerged for ever and we would never see a wild seal so close to the city centre again.’

(Still… we could end up with a colony of seals just below the barrage picking the fish off as they come through the bottleneck fish-runs like they now have decimating the fish populations of the Tees…?! Doing the Ribble run could just about finish off the Atlantic Salmon - the 10th most threatened animal species in Europe – if they go ahead with the barrage then...)

Save The Ribble Campaign Blog Launches on Sunday 14th May!

We will officially Launch the Save The Ribble Campaign Blog by emailing all the Preston City, South Ribble and Lancashire County Councillors with our blog address to let them know the strength of public feeling over the proposal to barrage the Ribble and develop on our green belt and local amenities.

This community blog is our forum, allowing us to voice our concerns and find out information – particularly as we feel that our councillors and politicians are NOT LISTENING to us.

To celebrate the enormous success of the blog we invite all Save The Ribble Campaigners, family, and friends of the Ribble to join us on a Ribblesiders Local Amenities Walk along the Ribble in Penwortham on Sunday 14th May at 5pm.

Scroll down for:
· Ribblesiders Local Amenities Walk details.
· More Residents’ Views and Ribble pictures – including the Ribble Tidal Bore!!
· New Posts about the Ribble and its vital importance to wildlife and local people.

Ribblesiders Local Amenities Walk, Sunday 14th May.

The walk will start at 5pm at Priory Park, Penwortham, progressing upriver on the Penwortham side and finishing on the Tram Bridge linking Preston Junction Nature Reserve in Penwortham with Avenham and Miller Parks in Preston, where we will celebrate by opening a bottle of champagne!
The walk takes just under an hour at a fairly leisurely pace.

For those less familiar with the Priory Park area, Priory Park is the small open area by the River at the bottom of Priory Lane in Penwortham. (Priory Lane is off Liverpool Road, opposite the top end of Cop Lane). Priory Park can be reached by two easy routes (see map below):
1. Go down Priory Lane, and at the bottom of the hill turn down Round Wood (new houses), and then right down Tower View (not named on map), walk through the gate here until the path opens out to the River.
2. Or, on the Penwortham side of the Liverpool Road Bridge where it crosses into Preston, there is a car park just off the road next to the allotments: walk through here and follow the River downstream (on Holme Road) for a few minutes and you will come to Priory Park.

Priory Park is on Holme Road by the Ribble at the end of Priory Lane and Round Wood.

The walk will go upriver from Priory Park, and pass the allotments which border Liverpool Road by the river (just before the Bridge over the Ribble to Preston). Here we cross over Liverpool Road (take care with small children!) and carry on straight ahead onto Penwortham Holme, on the path alongside the river, passing some of our local league football fields and another section of our allotments.

At the end of Penwortham Holme, we walk along Leyland Road for a short way, then carry on alongside the River on the Penwortham side, past the childrens’ play park on Margaret Road. We carry on along the Ribble, under the railway bridge and passing the scrub areas, small fields and wooded areas, home to countless hedgerow birds and small mammals - and privy to the frequent sight of birds of prey hunting them – and then pass the Heronry, and our fields, copses, and local football league playing fields bordering the Nature Reserve in this area, and along to the Tram Bridge, arriving here by 6pm at the latest, when we will crack open a bottle of bubbly! We will be posting pictures of the Walk on the blog.

If you have any queries about the Ribblesiders Local Amenities Walk, or the blog launch, please email us at


At 11:06 am, Anonymous Anonymous said...

To quote one of your campaigners...

"I am bemused why the council seem hell bent on making Preston into a Large city. They are not that great to live in. Social Problems, Congestion, Violence to name a few of the down sides. Will filling in the Geen areas on the Map improve Preston? "

We have all these problems already, and the green areas that you want to protect are rife with trouble, once night falls.

To quote you from that Prestonfound link.....

"The long-term plan may well be a unitary authority, whereby South Ribble (right through to Chorley) will just be merged into Preston City. Preston City Council presumably envisage the Ribble as a water-sports marina, and housing and business developments on what is currently floodplain/greenbelt, at the heart of their new inner-city vision. Those of us who live alongside the Ribble will find ourselves in a crowded, noisy inner-city environment instead of the semi-rural tranquility we currently enjoy..."

That just sounds like gaurdian reading snobbery, not in my back yard type thinking.
I'm not decided if I am for or angainst yet, but the loss of a nice view for residents, would not even come into it.

At 11:47 am, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This campaign to protect the Ribble from a barrage and the green belt from building development certainly isn't nimbyism: the Ribble is so important on an international as well as national and local scale, that it is protected under the Habitats Regulations 1994, a law which transposes the EEC Birds Directive into UK law. As far as the greenbelt is concerned, I've lived in this area for many years and have never heard of trouble after dark, as you seem to suggest, and have walked that way into town and back of an evening - feeling much safer here than walking down Fishergate at night! It is also the case that green belt is protected land nationally, and as farmland and woodland birds have declined by 50% over the last few decades - bird populations are used as an indicator by the Government to assess the state of our environment as well as peoples' quality of life - protecting such areas helps to halt this catastrophic decline for the sake of our native wildlife.

At 2:54 pm, Blogger punk-piglet said...

As a resident on the preston side of the river for the past 23 years, I can honestly say it's not about the loss of "a nice view". Building anything on that area of land will cause chaos to the local environment and wildlife. Also part of this planned development is a marina. Do the councils seriously think that this is the right location for this? Look at the mess they made when re-devoloping the Preston Albert dock. Half of the "luxury apartments" are up for sale or lease at anyone time, the shops are large diy and furniture superstores only accessable by cars, which need a huge amount of parking space and the whole place is set off by the boats constantly parked by the private marina club at the end. This may not be exactly what is being planned for the Ribble at the moment, but wait until the council get the funding and see what happens then! Who exactly is this project meant to benefit?


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