The Demonstration Test Catchments (DTC) project is a joint Defra, Environment Agency (EA) and Welsh Assembly Government initiative working in three river catchments – the Wensum in Norfolk plus the Eden (Cumbria) and Avon (Hampshire).

The overall objective of the project is to provide evidence to test the hypothesis that it is possible to cost effectively reduce the impact of agricultural diffuse water pollution on ecological function while maintaining food security through the implementation of multiple on-farm measures across whole river catchments using local expertise to solve local problems. [READ MORE]


What's in the news?

  CSF event
  • 21 Jan 2016: Cover, catch or companion? What are they and how do you best manage them to gain the benefits? This Catchment Sensitive Farming (CSF) event hosted by Natural England at Salle village hall invited farmers, particularly those in the Wensum catchment, to exchange knowledge on the use of cover crops to aid soil fertility. Cover crop use is becoming increasingly popular and this workshop focussed on the pro's and con's of their use, with first hand practical on-farm experience provided by Poul Hoveson. The event was attended by a good number of local farmers as well as staff/researchers from Natural England, Wensum DTC, Anglian Water, Agrii, Frontier, NIAB and others.
  • 20 Nov 2015: Wensum DTC data published! Data from the monitoring kiosks is now available from the Agricultural and Environmental Data Archive website and weather station data are currently being added. DOIs will be added once the weather station data has been published. After that it will be citable using the citation format specified on the individual dataset pages. To access the Wensum DTC data [click here].
  • 13 Nov 2015: WARNING TO ALL RIVER WENSUM USERS - crayfish plague outbreak CONFIRMED on the River Wensum The Environment Agency have today confirmed that thousands of native White Clawed Crayfish have died on the River Wensum near Fakenham, Norfolk. Results from specimens sent away for analysis confirm that crayfish plague was the cause. If you work, fish or are otherwise in contact with the river, please [click here] to see what precautions you can take to help prevent this disease from spreading.
  • 30 Oct 2015: Suspected crayfish plague outbreak on the River Wensum The Environment Agency have today reported a number of dead and dying native White Clawed Crayfish found in the River Wensum near Fakenham. Early signs suggest symptoms of crayfish plague.
  • 29 Oct 2015: Modelling diffuse pollution – PhD opportunity Are you interested in environmental modelling? Do you have a background in hydrology and hydrogeology? If so, don’t miss this PhD opportunity, combining groundwater and land-use modelling in the testing of diffuse pollution mitigation strategies at the catchment scale. This studentship is aligned with the Wensum Demonstration Test Catchment project and will be supervised by Prof Kevin Hiscock. For more information [click here]. Closing date for applications is 6th January 2016.
  • Oct 2015: Integrated Catchment Management across the water The Environmental Protection Agency in Ireland has produced a new newsletter to showcase examples of best practice from around the country on topics realting to catchment science and management. To read more [click here].
    DTC Cake
  • 09 Oct 2015: Our Thanks to Faye FayeIn from the very start, Faye Outram has made an enormous contribution to the work of the Wensum DTC as Field Programme Manager, overseeing the selection and installation of the monitoring equipment and, with the rest of the team, working out in all weathers collecting data and analysing the results. Faye is now moving on to a new role at UEA as Intellectual Property Officer in the Research & Enterprise Services. We celebrated her time with the team with a cake-fest, including the one pictured, made by Gilla Sunnenberg (our GIS specialist) featuring an edible map of the DTC study area! We all wish Faye the very best of luck in her new role.
  • 08 Oct 2015: BBC2’s ‘Harvest 2015’ Returning for a second series to celebrate British farming, this programme following the fortunes of some of the UK’s top farmers as they battle to bring in the 2015 harvest. In the opening episode featuring the east of England, Gregg Wallace is allowed to operate the harvester as Poul Hoveson and James Beamish talk about this year’s sugar beet harvest, revealing just how much sugar is produced from our home soil. The programme is available to view on BBC iplayer for the next 28 days at -
  • Oct 2015: Autumn Newsletters For all the latest news from the DTC, CSF Norfolk and Broachland Catchment Partership - The latest BCP newsletter includes reports on our recent activities at Salle. To read more [DTC click here], [CSF click here], [BCP click here].

To read more about what's been happening see our News page.

View Wensum DTC Google Earth project
Wensum Google Earth project
Explore the Wensum catchment from the comfort of your own computer using this 'Google Earth' project developed by GIS expert Gilla Sunnenberg. [Click here] to view the project.
Out and about
Mill on the Wensum
Three arched bridge
Demonstration Test Catchments Logo