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Partners in Action

In 1992, a partnership of four organisations was formed to spearhead the restoration. It became obvious that we needed a multi-disciplinary team to overcome the complex problems of the Fen; the range of skills within the partnership provided this team.

The total budget was £3.4 million. The work was organised into borehole relocation (£2.2 million), River Restoration (£0.4 million) and Fen Restoration (£0.8 million). This involved an intense period of activity with a very wide range of tasks, on a short timescale.

The conservation of fens was becoming a critical on the continent, and the problems encountered in Suffolk were typical of those found in every corner of the EU. The European Commission were looking for a Demonstration Project, which could be used to exemplify novel solutions to common problems. They chose our project and awarded 50% of the costs from the LIFE fund.

Environment Agency (EA)

The EA began operations on the 1st April 1996. It was formed from the merger of the Waste Regulations Authorities, Her Majesty's Inspectors of Pollution and the National Rivers Authority. This Agency is responsible for developing a comprehensive approach to protecting and improving the air, land and water environment of England and Wales.

Suffolk Wildlife Trust (SWT)

Established in 1961, the Trust is the largest charity concerned solely with the conservation of all Suffolk's wildlife and its habitats. It is one of the 48 County Wildlife Trusts and manages 75 reserves, surveys and monitors wildlife sites, runs education centres, supports local action and compaigns for better policies.

English Nature (EN)

English Nature is the statutory body which achieves, enables and promotes nature conservation in England, through working in partnership with individuals and with a wide range of organisations including Government, representative bodies, agencies and voluntary bodies. English Nature's Suffolk Team is based in Bury St Edmunds and is the local focus for the organisation's work which involves - amongst other things - looking after the county's National Nature Reserves (NNRs) and Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSIs).

Essex & Suffolk Water (ESW)

Essex & Suffolk Water are responsible for ensuring all domestic and business water demands are met in this area.

The source of our water - In the Essex area, most of the water used comes from river sources. Much of this water is imported from outside the region through a river transfer system which supports the dry Essex Rivers. We also have a small supply from boreholes in East London which draw water from the underground rock aquifers. These aquifers are layers of rock which store rainfall that has filtered down into them through the soil layers above.

In the Suffolk and Norfolk area, about half of the water we use comes from surface sources, with the remainder coming from underground. Boreholes throughout the Suffolk area pump water from the region's aquifers.

Who uses Essex & Suffolk Water? Essex & Suffolk Water supplies 1.7 million people with drinking water. We supply water to three fifths of Essex as well as Barking, Dagenham, Havering and parts of Redbridge. Parts of Suffolk and Norfolk are also supplied by Essex & Suffolk Water, from Winterton to Aideburgh on the coast and as far west as Redgrave.

The 1960s and 1970s saw a steady and significant growth in water demand. Currently demand for water is at its highest ever recorded level, with a record-breaking increase in demand during the summer of 1995, due to the exceptional weather.

Since the early 1960s, population in the region has grown by 18%. Suffolk has seen the greatest rate of growth at 41%. In addition, the summer season brings the holidaymakers to east - coast resorts such as Great Yarmouth and Lowestoft, increasing the Suffolk population by a third.

The Office of National Statistics predicts that the region's population will increase by 5% in the next 20 years, producing a further significant increase in the demand for water.

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Creating a Living Landscape for Suffolk