Case Study: Bank Reprofiling & Habitat creation – Basingstoke Canal

Client: Basingstoke Canal Trust

Erosion Control Project – 2006-7

Project outline

Extensive works have been carried out in the last 20 years to make the once disused Basingstoke Canal navigable. The canal is bordered by SSSIs on some stretches and these works had reduced the potential habitats for some rare species, particularly damsel and dragon flies.

The aim of the project was to create lengths of marshy margins adjacent to a SSSI that would provide habitats for the species under threat.

Services Provided

200m of bank were reprofiled by installing willow spilling between 1 and 2 metres from the existing bank. The space was to be filled with dredging from the canal to a depth just below the mean water level to create a marshy bank.

A further section of the canal was reprofiled using about 200m of wall created by staking geotextile at 0.5m intervals and topping off with coir rolls. This section was at an ‘elbow’ where the canal broadened to over twice its normal width and allowed for the reinstatement of a marsh that had previously existed.