WatersideCare's volunteers meet to celebrate and share 10 July 2017
Waterside Care project officer Lee shares his day at the annual volunteer gathering.

"This year, the WatersideCare Volunteer Network Meeting took place at Middleton Hall near Tamworth, a historic moated building in a beautiful setting with a lake and walled garden next to the RSPB Middleton Lakes wetland nature reserve. The River Tame, Langley Brook and the Birmingham & Fazeley Canal are all close by, making this the perfect watery world for the event. 
 
"This annual gathering is partly to thank volunteers for giving so much of their time caring for their waterways throughout the year and to celebrate their successes and achievements. It is also a chance for volunteers to meet other like-minded people and share experiences and ideas as well as chatting with the project partners from Keep Britain Tidy, the Canal and River Trust, the Environment Agency and Severn Trent Water.
 
"The day started with a welcome by our Chief Executive, Allison Ogden-Newton. Les Warren gave a presentation about the 2017 Keep Britain Tidy market research project which brought together all the feedback from WatersideCare volunteers’ survey.   
 
"More presentations followed by Tame Valley Wetlands Partnership, Tameside WatersideCare group, the Canal and River Trust and the RSPB. Zara Turtle from Severn Trent Water explained the 'Catchment-based approach' to volunteers.  
 
"In the afternoon, there was an opportunity for volunteers to see the Environment Agency demonstrate a kick-survey for aquatic invertebrates at Langley Brook on the RSPB reserve, followed by a guided tour of Middleton Hall and gardens. Over forty people attended the event and the weather was fine, making it a very enjoyable day."