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Portland Park stream restoration consultation

We are working in partnership with the Trent Rivers Trust to bring the Portland Park stream, which runs under the 2 ponds, out into the open for you to enjoy.

Proposal for restoration work

At present the stream flows through a culvert (pipe) underneath both the main and lower ponds emerging further down the stream. The ponds are fed from the spring pond through a small overflow pipe. The stream also overflows around the main pond and emerges by the lower pond. The bank is being badly eroded which is threatening the structural integrity of the lower pond.

Our proposal is to block the pipe at the top, preventing the water from going into the culvert. Instead it will flow in a new, naturalised channel around both ponds. The proposal will not alter the ponds, but will protect them from further erosion.

To see the full proposal including images and a plan of the area and changes to the course of the stream you can find more information in the related documents section of this web page.

Consultation results

We recently ran a survey to gather views on the proposal. You can find the full results in the related documents section of this web page. 

In question 4 of the survey we asked you if you had thoughts, comments or ideas about the proposal and you told us: 

  • "I think it’s a great project and will make a big difference to the stream at Portland Park"
  • "The land for Portland park was given to the people of Kirkby for public recreation and the current pandemic has shown how much this space is needed and appreciated. Whilst I enjoy the natural surroundings, I have often longed to see the ponds cleared up and the area used in the way that my parents would recall in their youth (the 1930s and 40s). I think this development strikes the right balance."
  • "Could wildflower planting beds be created in the area to further encourage wildlife and enhance the appearance of the area?"
  • "Once it is completed, it needs to be kept clear and not allowed to silt up.  Too often there has been good work done, only to return to an overgrown mess within a year or so."
  • "Please ensure that any improvements take into account social distancing which may be with us forever!"
  • "Ensure the paths are kept in good order with the extra footfall."
  • "Whilst protecting the pools and making the stream/park more enjoyable is perhaps the driving force behind this project, I think it is a great opportunity to completely restore the stream's biodiversity and ecological value. Strong efforts should be made to create a wide range of diverse habitats which benefit a variety of species, which will turn the stream into a valuable habitat of its own whilst also protecting the pools and creating enjoyable spaces."
  • "There are heritage aspects and memories to consider too. Many from my generations and prior can remember pond dipping and fishing for sticklebacks in the 1950's and 1960's. Also there's the issue of how the stream fitted in with local industry and transport over the years."
  • "It is fantastic to see something positive happening at Portland Park. I first visited over 10 years ago, and it was lovely - had a great feel with lots of people using it and loads of wildlife. I last went a few years ago and it was not pleasant - deserted, visitors centre shut, sign boards empty and vandalised. It felt like ADC had abandoned it in the name of austerity, and I haven't been back since."
  • "Picnic tables usually mean more litter."
  • "It's a wonderful area, the more work to protect it for future generations the better."
  • "Why the need for picnic tables why dipping? Wildlife should be left alone."
  • "Any restoration work to enhance the look of the stream, encouraging habitat has got to be a positive and will encourage visitors to use the park and facilities."
  • "Have you considered what the pools originally looked like? (I’m sure you have). Will there be disabled (wheelchair) access?"
  • "Any improvement would be good."
  • "Coloured lighting to give it a magical feel to children and have plenty cctv or increase police presence around the area. Consider people of limited mobility in your proposals please. (Unlike Nottm Trams)"
  • "The restoration needs to seriously consider above public use etc, the impact of changing the fluid dynamics of the stream, the impact of which, as seen on the Erewash north of its confluence with this stream shows. All changes to the flow will have an impact and could have serious effects both down stream and upstream. The benefit of the tributary system of the Erewash therefore should be the priority over public use, or nature as if it goes wrong as seen on the Erewash both will be impacted and the whole project will be detrimental which is not the intention."

Next steps

Following on from our survey the next steps in the project are: 

  • concept design for the project will be finalised, based on the survey proposals and taking into consideration comments from the survey
  • final permissions to be sought from relevant organisations such as planning (Ashfield District Council) / water course land drainage (Nottinghamshire County Council ) / additional permissions from Natural England some interim permissions have already been granted
  • preparation of funding bid to cover project costs, it is anticipated that this will be submitted in early 2020. 

Ways to contact us

If you have questions about the results or the proposal you can contact us by:

Place and Wellbeing
Ashfield District Council
Urban Road
Kirkby in Ashfield
NG17 8DA.