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Swimmable Selwyn at Coes Ford

Wednesday, July 31, 2019   Posted in: Signatory Notice Board By: Administrator With tags: water, environment, health, recreation

Selwyn District Council media release: 30th July 2019

Work is under way to turn Coes Ford back into a popular swimming site as part of a long-term plan to make the Selwyn-Waikirikiri River swimmable.

Swimmable Selwyn is part of the Canterbury Water Management Strategy that sees councils around the province working with Environment Canterbury to manage and improve the region’s water.

The Selwyn Waihora water zone committee is part of Swimmable Selwyn. The committee has set up a working group looking into sources of water quality decline - aiming to deliver certainty for the farming community, and recreation and water quality gains for everyone.

The group has identified Swimmable Coes Ford as a priority, with a plan for fencing, planting and reducing contaminants agreed. This plan aims to increase the water quality at Coes Ford and upstream.

Zone committee co-chairs Megan Hands and Les Wanhall say the work is a response to the strong message from the community that the river needed to be better looked after and the importance of Coes Ford as a swimming spot.

The fencing and planting project has seen land owners, community groups and schools working together to increase the distance of fences from the river and increase planting on the riverbanks, including lower bank plantings.

About 300 plants have been planted already this year on a farm in the Silverstream catchment above Coes Ford by a team of volunteers from Dairy NZ, the Selwyn Waihora Zone Committee, Waiora Forest Landscapes and Environment Canterbury. The planting will protect natural springs and improve the water quality.

Healthy Christchurch Champions

  • Canterbury District Health Board
  • Christchurch City Council
  • Environment Canterbury
  • Ministry of Health
  • Ngai Tahu
  • NZ Police
  • Pegasus Health
  • University of Otago, Christchurch