Bradford Beck, although hidden from view through much of the city, is very much loved by a dedicated group: The Friends of Bradfords Becks. They have been campaigning for better recognition of the river, to daylight sections, to encourage people to engage with their river, and to improve the water quality.
A recent development has arisen in a partnership between FOBB, The Environment Agency and the Bradford Municipal District Council specifically to improve fish passage through the lower reaches from the River Aire. The Wild Trout Trust were brought in for their expertise in designing and installing effective solutions. Removal, the gold standard to restore fish passage and hydromorphological process, was unfortunately not possible for the structures in question.
So far, two weirs and one long bridge culvert have been made more passable for fish by the installation of low-cost fishway solutions.
Completed in March 2020, we hoped to be surveying the fish populations above and below each structure on May 13th to raise awareness and use the spectacle to tell people about the issues of barriers in rivers. Covid-19 restrictions mean that our survey will be postponed until it is safe for us to practically continue with our project. Please stay tuned for updates - perhaps follow @ProfJGrey on Twitter for more immediate news.
We'd be happy for you to come along and see what we find!