Communication and collaboration: The key to environmental solutions

Set to take place at Morden Hall on the River Wandle, London, on the 21st May 2024, The UK River Summit & Festival is an event which promises to be a platform for collaboration and communication to improve our river health.

Bringing together leading international, national and local environmentalists, policy makers, businesses, individuals, brands, and members of the public who share a desire to work towards a more positive future for our rivers, this event offers environmental stakeholders the opportunity to build relationships and network while celebrating our rivers, engaging in community-led initiatives, and river experiences.

Following the success of the first two River Festivals in France (2022, 2023) and the inaugural UK River Summit on the River Test, a famous chalkstream in Hampshire, in June 2023, this event now moves to the River Wandle, a unique urban chalkstream which celebrates a rich historical and ecological importance.

Claire Zambuni, Founder of The River Summits & Festivals said “Morden Hall, London, situated on the River Wandle, is a fitting venue to host a Summit about the state of our rivers in the U.K, as it is a location which serves as a reminder of how nature, river wildlife, and urban life can peacefully coexist. It is also perfectly positioned as an accessible oasis in a bustling city, meaning we are able to welcome a much wider audience to this event. We invite the public to learn first-hand the issues our rivers are facing and distill our anger to make a positive change.”

As we navigate the challenges of a rapidly changing planet, the key to environmental progress lies in facilitating continuous dialogue between various players – from government officials and NGOs to businesses and the public. This event aims to bridge these gaps. Attendees will gain informed knowledge from key environmental stakeholders, be able to ask direct questions, work collaboratively to find solutions, and celebrate our rivers.

Date, Location, and Schedule:

Tuesday 21st May 2024 at Morden Hall, South-West London

  • Event opens at 9.30am
  • The UK River Summit panel begins at 10:15am
  • Lunch at 12:30pm
  • Afternoon panels and activities from 1.30pm – 6pm

Summit panel speakers include:

  • Penny Gane – Head of Practice at Fish Legal
  • Dr Bella Davies – CEO at South East Rivers Trust
  • Shaun Leonard – Director at Wild Trout Trust
  • Jim Murray – Actor and Founder of Activist Anglers
  • Dylan Roberts – Head of Fisheries at Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust
  • Dr Jack Hogan – renowned local historian and member of The Wandle Piscators, The Fly Connection & South East Rivers Trust.

Afternoon panel discussions include:

  • “Effecting Policy in Rivers” including Penny Gane (Head of Practice, Fish Legal), Stuart Singleton-White (Head of Campaigns, Angling Trust), Bobby Dean (Liberal Democrat Candidate for Carshalton & Wallington), and Shosha Adie (ENDS Report)
  • “The Freshwater Emergency: from scarcity to abundance” River Action UK panel chaired by CEO James Wallace, and speakers including; Philip Duffy (CEO, Environment Agency) Lila Thompson (CEO, British Water), Feargal Sharkey (Activist, SERA Chairman), Lawrence Gosden (CEO, Southern Water), Rachel Salvidge (Director, Watershed Investigations)
  • “Future of Farming” with Abel & Cole and Ecologist Robin Leech
  • Cross-party discussion on water security for the future with leading politicians
  • “The History of the River Wandle” talk with Dr Jack Hogan

Film Screenings include:

  • “Wandle: A River at Risk” film screening with panel of cast and crew including Bobby Dean, Liberal Democrat Candidate for Carshalton & Wallington at 5:30pm
  • “Fish Legal” and “Hydrotherapy” film screening by Friction Collective
  • “Black Samphire” and “This is Shit” – films by River Action UK

Afternoon activities include:

  • Hands-on workshops and river walks with South East Rivers Trust
  • Introduction to Fly Fishing 101s & Kit with Orvis UK and Fishing For Schools
  • Wandle Piscators ‘Meet the Cast’ casting instruction and learn about local fly fishing and conservation
  • Wandle Industrial Museum: textile printing demonstration and display of works by William Morris, Kilburn, and Liberty’s
  • Entertainment from The Funny Terns: performance by comic musician duo, British Pilgrimage Trust and more.
  • Art Exhibition (including works for sale) with Jo Minoprio, Julia Manning, Tolly Robinson
  • Stands from The National Trust, Abel & Cole, YETI, Orvis UK, Knight Frank, Merton Historical Society, WildFish, Fish Legal, River Action UK and more.


Tickets are now on sale here: UK River Summit – Orvis UK

Tickets include refreshments and lunch, and all activities on offer during the day.

Event partners include The National Trust, South East Rivers Trust, Fish Legal, Orvis UK, River Action UK, Filson, Fishing for Schools, The Wandle Piscators, The Wandle Industrial Museum, Delivita, Lakedown Brewing Co., and Abel & Cole.

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Posted 27/03/24

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