Wales’ lakes, reservoirs, ponds, rivers, estuaries, beached, and coastal environments are collectively known as our ‘blue spaces’ (as opposed to our onshore environment which is referred to as ‘Green spaces’).
CPRW, as with our onshore environments, supports and campaigns for greater access to them for exercise, recreation, creative purposes (painting and photography). As with our green spaces, where we encourage users to follow the Countryside Code, we ask people to follow the Marine Code for activities in coastal areas and are working with other stakeholders to develop a similar code for our waterways. If we all treat our environments and nature with respect, we can ensure that they will be there for the next generation to enjoy as well.
Whether you are part of a club, on a tour or as an individual activity, canoeing or kayaking on our blue spaces is a great way to see more of our countryside and keep fit at the same time. Balance is needed in areas popular with fishers and areas of sensitive ecosystems. Otherwise, CPRW strongly supports more access to our blue spaces for canoeing and kayaking. We work with our WEL partners like Canoe Wales and Wildfish to develop campaigns to improve sensible areas for more activity.
Swimming in our blues spaces is one of the most loved past times in Wales. Another reason we are campaigning against the pollution of our blue spaces is to make sure it is safe to swim in our rivers, lakes and seas. Wales currently has a number of Designated Swimming Areas, but currently these are only found in lakes.
CPRW is actively supporting the attempt by Friends of the Upper Wye to get ‘The Warren’, an area of the river near Hay on Wye that has traditionally been used for swimming, designated as a swimming area. This would be the first of its kind in Wales (on a river) and would force Natural Resources Wales to regularly test the water quality and take action to remedy any issues. If successful, we will campaign to introduce more Designated Swimming Areas across Wales.
Fishing is one of the most popular past times in the world, with more people going fishing every weekend in the UK than all the football crowds on a Saturday combined! We fight for healthy rivers not just for recreational activities but to ensure that there are fish to catch. Whilst we call for greater access to our blue spaces we respect and acknowledge the rights of fishers. We work with WEL partners like Wildfish and other partners like Fish Legal to try and ensure government policies strike the right balance.