Tony Rees, CEO South East Wales Rivers Trust

My interest in rivers began when I took up fishing at the age of 11 years. In my early twenties I took an interest in my local angling association and this developed into becoming part of the administration. From this I was invited to join fishery committees from the Old Rivers boards through to the current body Natural Resources Wales. It was in the era of the National Rivers Authority and EA Wales that I was asked to chair a new Rivers Trust SEWRT.

By this time the importance of Rivers and their functions in increasing biodiversity and benefits to us as human beings was firmly established. SEWRT covers what are classed as the main the old industrial valleys of South East Wales. Improvements to fish populations through habitat and easement work has seen better water quality and salmon reaching the headwaters of our valley river in some cases for the first time since the industrial revolution.