Restoring the Chess at Chesham Moor

The Chesham Moor is common land, lying close to the River Chess, found at the heart of Chesham town. The Moor itself is a community area, with a children’s play park, tennis courts, community outdoor swimming pool and sports ground, as well as offering an area for local people to discover wildlife 

The Problem

The side-channel to the River Chess is adjacent to the main access route to the Moor and is very well-known within the community. In desperate need of restoration, this project enabled the implementation of ideas that have been on the watchlist of Chesham Town Council and the Chesham Environmental Group for at least ten years.

By creating a more natural looking chalk stream, we have the opportunity to improve the habitat for riverine plants and animals, restore the connection between the channel and its neighbouring landscape, implement a sustainable drainage system (SuDS) to reduce contaminants from road run-off, and significantly increase the community value of a high visible asset with all the positive educational benefits that enables.  

Chilterns ANOB

The Plan

The aim of this project was to restore natural banks along 200m stretch of river by removing already failing concrete walls on either side and re-grade the bank slope to a more natural gradient. This not only provides a new habitat for bankside vegetation, it also reinstates the connection between the channel and the land immediately adjacent to it, which will improve drainage and provide an additional source of water to combat low flows.

The Project

Unfortunately, this project had to be put on hold within the scope of the Chalk Stream and Wetland’s Meadow project, however will be completed with additional funding this year.