River Chelmer

A meandering stretch of the Chelmer and Blackwater Navigation flowing down towards the Heybridge Basin. The surrounding land use is predominantly arable, but grazing pasture, disused ground workings and recreational grassland are also present.

The area (land use)

The dominant land use for this stretch of river is arable.

No livestock were recorded.

Channel characteristics

The river channel consists of mainly silt, and riffles are absent.

At the time of recording the flow of water was slow and the channel was 5-10m wide and 1-2m in depth.

For most of this stretch the channel profile is steep canalised.

Bankside trees were frequent, marginal plants and in-channel plants are dominant. Woody debris was noted to be rare.


The channel has been straightened and man-made enhancements are absent along this stretch of river.

Field drains were recorded as absent and barriers / culverts are present.


Areas of trampling / poaching were absent and areas of erosion were absent at the time of the survey.


Several species of waterfowl were seen at the time of the survey.

Additional comments

This stretch has a variety of adjacent land uses including Cricket Bat Willow plantation, but the fencing and adjacent pastureland has reduced bankside erosion. There are good amounts of reed along this stretch. 


River Chelmer

Date completed


Upstream Grid ref (red marker)


Downstream Grid ref (green marker)


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