Project breathes life into the riverbank

ECONORTH, the consultancy arm of Northumberland Wildlife Trust, has been busy installing a traditional form of riverbank on a 40metre stretch of the River Glen, near Akeld Steads.

The work will help protect an important access track leading to nearby electricity infrastructure belonging to National Grid. It was conducted as part of a project by the Electricity Alliance East a partnership between National grid and Balfour Beatty.

A technique, know as ‘willow spiling’ was used which involves live willow rods being woven around live willow stakes and then driven into the river bank.

In the coming months, the roots and shoots will grow and bind the soil and stabilise the bank in a very environmentally-friendly way.

Paul Salmon, EcoNorth Manager, said: “We are really looking forward to seeing the willow grow as it will help to protect an important strategic asset and provide new habitat for birds, small mammals and possibly even otter.”