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Jun 16 16 tweets 11 min read Twitter logo Read on Twitter

All over England, rivers are dying. Polluted with sewage, fertilizers, biocides, microplastics & industrial effluents; some abstracted to the point of drying up.


#rivers #LoveYourRiver #sewagescandal #riverpollution #RiverAccess Image
The recent surge in public interest & media attention is thanks to grassroots campaigners - people who know and love their local river, who’ve seen and documented the harm, and resolved to DO SOMETHING.

Taking action starts with reconnection.
Water is the ultimate connector.

Our rivers carry it through cities and countryside, through our stories & history, through every living being.

A river runs through you, between kitchen tap & toilet flush. The state of our rivers is, literally, everyone’s business. Image
And yet, we have never been so disconnected from our rivers. If you swim or paddle in water where previous generations bathed, worked, traveled & played for millennia, there’s every chance someone will challenge your right to be there.

Enough of that.

The public want greater access to nature, and medical science, social science & education specialists agree we need it. We are winning the political argument too, with @UKLabour pledging a Right to Roam Act theguardian.com/environment/20…
So we’re turning our attention to a future which must see not only a restoration of customary rights, but a cultural reset in which respect, care, guardianship & reverence for nature become the norm. We call this #WildService. Rivers are the obvious place to start. Image
Time in ‘green space’ is good for us. Time in ‘blue’ space (rivers, lakes, coasts) even more so. & the more deprived the community the greater the uptick. But it’s not just people that stand to benefit. We can reciprocate. We can love rivers back to life. bbc.com/future/article…
Not everyone behaves perfectly around our waterways. But wild swimmers don’t dump sewage into the river. Waterside wanderers don’t bulldoze the banks. Paddlers don’t peddle monthly doses of ecocide in pet stores. Kids dipping for tiddlers don’t cause mass fish kills. Image
What’s your local river?
Where does it come from?
Where does it go?
What are its stories?
Which water company uses it?
How natural are its course&flow?
What lives there?
What’s in the water?
Can you visit freely?
Who owns it?

Who cares & speaks for it? How about you?
It’s time to find out. July is #LoveYourRiver month, kicking off with a series of #WildService actions on 8th July exploring, celebrating & caring for the #YorkshireDerwent, a river with fascinating history, hydrology, ecology & many stories to tell. We can’t wait to share them!
With fantastic partners we’ll be testing water quality; gathering trash; watching wildlife; learning about #INNS, biosecurity & #RightsOfNature; making art; singing songs; telling tales, & invoking the badass guardianship of #JennyGreenteeth to continue our year of #FolkLaw.
We invite you to do the same. Find out first about your local river, then go and see it. How’s it doing?
Share what you learn using #LoveYourRiver and #LYR[LocaRiverName] e.g. #LYRYorksDerwent. And of course, please share & get the big river lovers in your life involved.
This is a RTR action everyone can join - your contributions will inspire others. If you have ideas or capacity to organise an event, see if there’s a local RTR group near you or join our contact list to find others. righttoroam.org.uk/everybody-welc…
If you’re a toe-dipper or full-immersion type, a SUPer, sit-on-topper, canoeist or kayaker, rower or sitter-and-starer, nature nerd or creative, fisher or spinner of yarns, whether you’re looking to play or pray, there are endless ways to #LoveYourRiver with #WildService. Image
We can’t wait to see what you discover. Please follow the #ScottishOutdoorAccessCode: take responsibility for your own actions; respect the legitimate activity of others; care for nature. outdooraccess-scotland.scot/practical-guid…

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More from @Right_2Roam

Mar 13
Watched Sir David Attenborough's #WildIsles last night and feeling simultaneously enchanted and depressed by the state of nature in this country? You're not alone. Here's why access to nature is the remedy we all need... 🧵1/11
Sir David told it like it is, "Only 13% of Britain is covered by trees. That's one of the lowest proportions in the whole of Europe." True. We are banned from the majority of woods in England, for the sake of 50 MILLION non-native pheasants shot every year. 2/11
Notice how the BBC filmed inside Blenheim Palace grounds to capture ancient oak trees? The public are often barred from such pretty places. The most beautiful and the most polluted parts of the country are off-limits to the public. To care for nature, we need access to both. 3/11
Read 11 tweets
Jan 19
Our response to the supposed 'deal' between Dartmoor National Park Authority and (as yet undisclosed) major landowners RE: Wild Camping.

Tl;dr: It's a stitch up.
The proposed deal replaces long held rights with 'permissive access', which can be withdrawn at any time, entirely at the whims of the landowners.
We have also been told that 'permission' to wild camp will also involve some form of public payment to major landowners.

Many of these landowners already receive hundreds of thousands of pounds from the public via subsidies.
Read 5 tweets
Nov 22, 2022
Join Right to Roam for a rally outside the High Court to defend the right to wild camp in Dartmoor - the only place in England where it is currently legal! ⛺️

Now that right is under threat from a major landowner. 😡

The stars are for everyone! 🌙

We're especially keen to hear from the young people who will be most affected by the ban, including participants of Duke of Edinburgh Awards, Ten Tors, outward bound groups. If that's you, please get in touch with us by email at: Righttoroam2020@gmail.com
You can learn more about the case here: theguardian.com/environment/20…
Read 4 tweets
Oct 23, 2022

Epping Forest (just outside London) was in the process of being Enclosed and made private in the 19th century, but a campaign of mass trespass forced the government to place it in common hands. This 1871 image was made just months after a demonstration there. 1/9
Around the mid-19th century, over half of Epping Forest had been enclosed and the rights which commoners had for firewood and grazing or even just a walk in the woods, were (as with most of the English countryside) being stolen away and cut down, just like the forest itself. 2/9
The public weren't happy. On 11th Nov, they took part in an annual ceremony defending their rights of pollarding in the forest (lopping higher branches for firewood while encouraging new growth). The event was celebrated on Staples Hill with bonfires and much beer and joy. 3/9
Read 9 tweets

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