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Ambitious habitat creation scheme hopes to provide new wetlands for ‘generations to enjoy’

PUBLISHED: 12:00 19 October 2018

James Maclean CEO with Avi Verber, project manager. Picture: Land & Water

James Maclean CEO with Avi Verber, project manager. Picture: Land & Water

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A habitat creation scheme hopes to bring a new haven of wildlife to the Rainham Marshes with the creation of more than 5km2 of continuous habitats.

To ensure that the RSPB Rainham Marshes nature reserve is protected for generations to enjoy, the civil and environmental engineering company, Land & Water has gained consent for developing a habitat creation scheme at the marshes. Picture: Land & WaterTo ensure that the RSPB Rainham Marshes nature reserve is protected for generations to enjoy, the civil and environmental engineering company, Land & Water has gained consent for developing a habitat creation scheme at the marshes. Picture: Land & Water

RSPB Rainham Marshes nature reserve is an oasis for all kinds of wildlife including birds, dragonflies and water voles.

To ensure that this haven is protected for generations to enjoy, the civil and environmental engineering company, Land & Water has gained consent for developing a habitat creation scheme at the marshes.

This will be the largest habitat creation project ever constructed inside the M25 and Land & Water’s most ambitious project to date.

Andrew Gouldstone, RSPB site manager at Rainham Marshes nature reserve, said: “This is hugely welcome news, enabling us to achieve our ambitions for the silt lagoons.

“The dredgings will enable the lagoons to be improved, creating new places for wildlife - pools linked by ditches for wading birds and wetland species, and drier grassy areas for important insects such as bumblebees.

“We’re confident that our partnership with Land and Water and the Port of London Authority will provide an environment for generations of visitors to enjoy.”

The scheme will see the importation of more than six million tonnes of wet and dry spoil material which will form the basis of a new landform and cover the site to collect rainwater to fuel the wetlands passively.

James Maclean, CEO at Land & Water, added: “Our involvement at Rainham can be cast back more than five years, to a time when we undertook an options appraisal on behalf of the Port of London Authority.

“We analysed ways in which the former dredging disposal lagoons alongside the A13 at Rainham Marshes, could be reinvigorated to support infrastructure projects along the Thames.

“In listening to the needs and desires of the stakeholders, we designed and developed a much bolder plan to turn our lagoons into the largest habitat creation project ever constructed inside the M25.”

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