Ock Catchment Partnership
The Ock Catchment Partnership protects and restores freshwater and wetland habitats, and manages the catchment to reduce flooding and diffuse pollution.
Our vision for the Ock
“Working together to improve the entire freshwater environment of the Ock Catchment from its springs, fens, ponds and headwaters, along its tributaries and chalk streams to its floodplains and main rivers, so that it has more clean water, is more biodiverse, its communities experience reduced flooding, is resilient to climate destabilisation, provides water resources and is valued and used by local people.”
About the Ock Catchment Partnership
The Ock Catchment Partnership is a group of local organisations and individuals working together using the Catchment Based Approach to plan and deliver activities and projects in the Ock that.
The Partnership meets quarterly and is hosted by Freshwater Habitats Trust using a small grant from the Environment Agency, supplemented by specific support from Thames Water. Part of its remit is to collaboratively produce and update the Ock Catchment Plan, directing how the whole freshwater environment will be improved as required by UK legislation.
The Ock Catchment Partnership is bound by Terms of Reference and guiding principles.
The aims of the Ock Catchment Partnership
1 Reverse the decline in the Ock Catchment’s biodiversity
We’re increasing the diversity and abundance of native freshwater plants, invertebrates, amphibians, fish, mammals, reptiles and birds at landscape scale through:
- Restoring and creating the full range of freshwater and wetland habitats
- Protecting, extending and connecting clean water habitat
- Increasing distribution and resilience freshwater species of conservation concern populations.
2 Improve water quality
This will mean that wildlife can thrive and people can safely enjoy the Ock’s bathing waters. To achieve this, we’re working with partners to reduce pollution from agriculture, sewage, urban areas and roads.
3 Manage flood risk
We’re supporting the delivery of Natural Flood Management (NFM) in the Ock’s headwaters and Sustainable Urban Drainage schemes (SUDs)
4 Enhance resilience of the Ock’s freshwater environment to the climate crisis
We’re restoring ecosystem functions at the landscape scale and maximising the carbon storage potential of natural carbon sinks
5 Encourage sustainable water resource management and demand measures
This will help to meet water needs for drinking water, agriculture and business without damaging the freshwater environment.
6 Public engagement
We’re upporting the community to value, understand and enjoy the freshwater environment.
7 Evaluate our success
We continually collect evidence, capture best practice and share what works – and what didn’t.
Working together for a healthier catchment
Through the Ock Catchment Partnership, we’re collaborating with partners across the Ock catchment.
The Partnership also includes: the Flood Network, Friends of Lye Valley, Hill End, HT Farm Consulting, Kingston Lisle and Fawler Parish Council, Long Mead’s Thames Valley Wildflower Meadow Restoration ProjectSandford on Thames Parish Council and Steventon Parish Council.
There are a number of ways you can get involved in protecting and improving the Ock for freshwater wildlife and keeping our rivers safe for swimming.
Our work in the Ock catchment
Discover more about the practical work we’re carrying out in the Ock Catchment.