Water Quality Monitoring- Leighton Beck

Interested in understanding more about your local area? We’re looking for a team of volunteers to help us with water quality sampling along Leighton Beck near Arnside. 

We are establishing a monitoring programme in this area between January 2020 and September 2020, focusing on sampling 6-7 different sites at fortnightly intervals. Sampling will be scheduled across different time frames to include evening and weekend sampling and some wet weather events. Further guidance and the appropriate kit will be provided to anyone who is interested. Please note as a volunteer you don’t have to sign up to sampling fortnightly, sampling can be on a one off basis or as frequently as suits. There will also be opportunities during the summer months to undertake some riverfly sampling and fish surveys.

The Project

This is part of a wider partnership project by the national Rivers Trust: Wholescale Approach to Marine Management. Morecambe Bay is the pilot location supporting collaboration between the local coastal partnership (Morecambe Bay Partnership) and the three catchment partnerships around Morecambe Bay (hosted by Lune Rivers Trust, Wyre Rivers Trust and ourselves). To project focuses on monitoring and collaboratively developing a better understanding of the potential impacts of different factors on Morecambe Bay. Here in South Cumbria we have chosen to focus on water quality. 

Leighton Beck is a relatively small catchment draining into Morecambe Bay which is recognised as being of international importance for conservation. The bay also supports shellfish beds and some designated bathing waters. Furthermore, because Leighton Beck is a small catchment it allows us to design and trial a monitoring programme to sample at a higher frequency and across number of different sites. Citizen science offers fantastic opportunities to expand existing monitoring programmes. For example it can allow us to monitor outside of lab. opening times and potentially pick up peaks in ‘poor water’ quality which may be missed by routine monitoring. It is hoped that if this monitoring programme is successful we can expand it to other catchments across South Cumbria. 

Interested in Volunteering?

We are planning to run a training session with an introduction to the project and a chance to meet other volunteers in January. If you are interested or would like to find out more, please contact jayne@scrt.co.uk