River Roach

This catchment consists of the River Roach and Prittle Brook. The Roach is made up of 2 main tributaries, which are Nobles Green Ditch to the north and Eastwood Brook to the south, these three water bodies have a total length of 21km. Prittle Brook flows into the River Roach and has a length of 6km.

This map shows the completed walkovers for the River Roach Catchment.

Click or tap a pin to see details of a walkover

The channel flows through Cherry Orchard Jubilee Country Park, which is found on the south bank, on the north side is arable fields. The channel has a natural structure with riffles and woody debris creating variations in flow.

This section runs through the urban park, Belfairs Park. This area is heavily impacted by dogs and dog walkers. The channel has a natural shape but the banks are mostly bare and heavily trampled by dogs. Overland runoff is probably impacting on water quality, runoff is an issue due to the compacted ground and lack of vegetation along the river bank and surrounding woodland.

This section is canalised with concrete reinforced banks for the whole stretch. Vegetation is limited in this area and the overland runoff is a possible issue. There are man-made barriers present including a weir and a culvert.

The channel flows through Cherry Orchard Jubilee Country Park which is found on the south side of the channel and arable fields border the north side. The banks on both sides were seen to be eroding during the survey and this has been exaserbated on the south side by dogs entering and leaving the channel.

The channel has been strightened and reinforced in this section. There are intermittent pipes all along the banks, draining water from local roads and possibly houses too. There were small areas of scrub and trees along the banks and rubbish and dead leaves were blocking the channel in places. The brook runs next to houses and under roads for the whole stretch.

Arable fields and football pitches were the main land uses along the bank in this section. There are lots of trees and scrub along the banks. The flow of the water changes from moderate upstream to slow downstream.

Upstream the banks are mostly earth with some concrete reinforcement in places however further downstream the banks become completed concrete enforced. The channel is shaded by trees and there is some bankside vegetation growing above the concrete banks. in places the channel becomes blocked by leaves. The brook runs next to houses and under roads for the whole stretch.

Most of this section of the brook is concrete reinforced but some areas still have natural banks, also some areas have a stony bed allowing riffles to develop. The channel is quite shaded by trees with the best of the bankside vegetation to be found on the north bank, which is the Prittle Brook Greenway. The south bank is mainly housing so there is some problems with scrub development and rubbish. 

The brook travels through the urban area of Prittlewell. The channel is mainly concrete lined with little inchannel vegetation, however this changes downstream where the channel begins to become choked with vegetation. 

This part of the brook flows through Priory Park so the channel changes from concrete reinforcement to a more natural structure. There is inchannel vegetation and also some bankside vegetation but this is heavily managed and generally consists of short amenity grass and ornamental plants.

This is a very featureless section of the brook. It is bordered by arable land on one side and housing on the other. The buffer strips are narrow but consist of a variety of herbs as well as grass. Reeds were found downstream and algae was present throughout.

The Channel has an abundance of reeds upstream but the habitat becomes more brackish downstream as it becomes more estuarine. At this point the reed begin to diminish and the plant communities begin to change. The banks are vegetated with mainly grass and there are few trees and little scrub. 

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