I’m a writer and conservationist with a lifelong passion for rivers and most of all for chalk-streams.
I caught the chalk-stream bug and became interested in river restoration in the early 1990s when working as a teacher in Dorset. I met Simon Cain and inspired by his work at Ballington Manor on the River Wylye began a restoration project on the River Stour, in the grounds of the school.
A few years later in 1997 I founded the Wild Trout Society which went on to become the Wild Trout Trust. Since then I’ve served as voluntary director and then President. I am currently honoured to serve as one of several vice-presidents.
Since then I have been coordinating a catchment-scale programme of restoration on the River Nar, designing and managing a variety of projects including: 7km of Large Woody Debris installation, 2km of re-meandering and relic channel recovery, 2km of restored gravel river-bed and riffles. Our projects continue with a scheduled re-location / recreation of 2km of natural, meandering channel to replace a dredged mill-leat which was completed in September 2021.
In 2014 I received the Bernard Venables Award for wild trout conservation. I am also an Angling Trust ambassador and honorary life-member of the Wild Trout Trust.
I am a Vice President of the Wye and Usk Foundation, whose marvellous work I wholeheartedly support as a beacon of excellence in the rivers trust movement.
Since late 2020 I have been chairing the CABA Chalk Streams Restoration Group.
On June 2nd 2022 I was thrilled to be awarded an OBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours for ‘services to chalk stream conservation’. Obviously this means a great deal to me personally but I feel it is also a very big deal for chalk stream conservation and I am delighted to have played a part in raising the profile of these wonderful rivers. But many, many other people have done that too and many of them are good friends of mine … so I probably owe them all a pint.