2015 turned out to be another year of change but this time slightly more predictable. We came to the end of some of our bigger projects, such as the Catchment Restoration Funds projects, and transitioned from the previous Upstream Thinking Phase 1 project into a bigger, more expansive Phase 2 project. Fortunately, there has been a lot of consistent activity that the Trust does on an annual basis to offset the change. This has included delivering a wider reaching partnership programme across all the catchments in the West Country and assessing the fishing stocks in many of our key rivers. Indeed 2015 saw us breaking our record with electro‐fishing at well over 300 sites, so a massive thanks to all the supporters and assistants who have helped make this happen.
Amongst other things 2015 also saw the launch of our 5‐year charity plan which spelt out our aim to bring all our rivers to life, from source to sea, for the benefit of all. The main thrust of this plan is to increase the delivery of ‘on‐the‐ground’ practical conservation and advice that engages people with their river. To fulfil this goal we want to ensure that each river has a dedicated, driven and motivated officer that is able to link with all the community groups in the area and I am pleased that we are already well on our way to that end. The first part of this plan saw the implementation of improved structures and systems within the Trust to make sure we are making the most of every opportunity, linking works together to make them more efficient and ensuring our work leads to the benefits we want to see – namely improved water quality and freshwater habitats and species.
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