The Wild Trout Trust is a conservation charity that focuses on practical work to improve habitat for trout across the UK and Ireland. Although we are a small team, we have a big impact because we work in partnership with Rivers Trusts, Wildlife Trusts, local conservation volunteer groups, fishing clubs, landowners, Government Agencies and many more. Our role in these partnerships is to provide expert advice and practical project delivery as well as to inspire others and give them the advice and practical skills to improve and maintain their lake or river for the benefit of trout and all wildlife.
Most of our members, supporters and staff are anglers, but we are not an angling organisation. We simply love wild trout and the rivers they live in; the trout are an indicator that much in and around the river is well. We want to make sure that trout and all that they stand for are there for future generations.
Our approach to habitat and ecosystems is based on science and refined by experience of the practical application of habitat improvements. We have considerable expertise on our own staff, and we are supported by a group of advisors who form our science ‘knowledge network’.
We do not engage directly in lobbying, but work closely with the Angling Trust and other angling and conservation organisations to ensure our views are represented on key issues such as dredging, abstraction, diffuse pollution and hydropower.
The principal involvement of the Wild Trout Trust in the SUNRISE project will be working on the Staffordshire University site with the aim to improve the structure and ecological function of approximately 1km of the River Trent. The river at that location is artificially straight and the structure of the cross-section, substrate and marginal habitat is extremely uniform as a result. Historic maps of the site reveal a meandering channel with greater potential ecological value and, working within the modern constraints on the channel, we aim to increase the wildlife and green-space amenity value of this section of the Trent. The social importance of the river is, of course, enshrined in the place-names of the developments that it has enabled throughout history and this is a chance to return the favour.