River Roach

Just upstream from the lake there is a weir, it is thought that this was constructed to heighten the water level to allow this to filter down a ditch into the lake. Due to the high phosphate levels in the main channel, when this was entering the lake it was resulting in the growth of blue green algae so it was decided to prevent water from the channel entering the lake and instead let it fill naturally via rain water.

This has resulted in the ditch drying up and filling with scrub and the lake levels becoming low during dry periods. The sides of the lake are also prone to erosion.

In order to improve the lake as a habitat and improve the water quality of Nobles Green Ditch we would like to remove the weir, which is not serving an obvious purpose but is a barrier to fish migration, but reinstate the ditch so that water from the main channel can flow into the lake when water levels are high. 

Within the lake we would like to install a Biohaven, this is a floating island which can be catered to the size and the needs of the area. The Biohaven will act as a filter that will help to remove the phosphorous and ammonia from the water,resulting from the outflow from the sewage treatment works, and also silt to drop out before the water filters back into the main channel once more. In order for the water to filter back into Noble Green Ditch a reed bed would be created on the east edge of the lake which the lake water would filter though before entering the main channel which would also help to filter out any remaining silt and contaminants. This will help reduce contaminants within the ditch.

We would also like to create a wetland area between the lake and Nobles Green Ditch to create better connection between the two aquatic habitats and also to recreate an additional area where the lake can filter back into the main channel if water levels become high.

Other improvements we would like to make to the lake include planting trees in the south-west edge to create an area of wet woodland, to reprofile the sides of the lake or add Coir rolls so that marginal vegetation can development and use any excavations to alter the lake bed so that there are shallow and deep areas so that different plant communities can develop.


River Roach

WFD water body status


WFD overall status objective

To achieve Good Ecological status by 2027

Project type

Habitat Creation,improving water quality

Benefiting species and/or habitats

Improve the lake habitat by adding vegetation via the Biohaven, encouraging the growth of vegetation on the lake bed and sides by reprofiling and/or adding Coir rolls. Improve the water quality of the lake by filtering some of the water through the lake to remove contaminants before the water filters back into the main channel. Removal of the weir will help with fish populations by removing a barrier to their migration.

Total area covered by project

Lake in Cherry Orchard Jubilee CP

Total area surveyed

Cherry Orchard Country Park

Contact for more information

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Funding source

None at present

Website key stakeholders:

Environment Agency logo      Essex Wildlife Trust logo           ESWT Logo 70

Design by LTD Design Consultants and build by Garganey Consulting based on an original concept by Herts and Middlesex Wildlife Trust