River Trent at Stoke-on-Trent: SUNRISE project

SUNRISE: Staffordshire University Leek Road Campus Sub-Project

Location: River Trent (0.5 km) Staffordshire University Leek Road Campus, Stoke-on-Trent

Issue: Historically straightened, incised/​cut off from floodplain, devoid of trout habitat and uniformly fine sand/​silt substrate, invasive/non-native plant species

Objective: To create a natural channel and floodplain that supports trout and other wildlife.
Create sinuosity, introduce cross-sectional variation in flow depth and velocity, diversify substrate particle sizes, increase connectivity to floodplain, introduce backwater areas, increase proportion of native/locally-appropriate flora

Method: Formal geomorphological design, substrate introduction, nature-like channel created from scratch via earthworks

Budget: £100K

WTT Role: Conceptual design for habitat improvement, Ecological consultant, Consent application, Steering group member

Partners: Staffordshire Wildlife Trust (Project management), AquaUoS/​Dynamic Rivers (geomorphological modelling and design), European Union (funded via ERDF), Environment Agency (funding and consent consultation/​processing), Staffordshire University (consenting and facilitation), Stoke City Council (funding, financial reporting/​liaison with EU, financial administration)

Project Date: 2019 to 2021