Signing off in style to help wildlife on the Adur

Released: Tuesday, 01 August 2023

Three new signs have been installed to raise awareness of how important the River Adur and the surrounding habitat are for wildlife.

The Adur Estuary is a popular place for a variety of activities such as wildlife watching, walking, cycling, water activities and fishing.

It is designated nationally as a site of special scientific interest (SSSI) and we are working with a host of partners to ensure the area remains protected.

SSSIs are sites of national importance for nature designated by Natural England and afforded legal protection, meaning birds, plants and their habitats there are legally protected under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981.

Cllr Emma Evans, Adur's Cabinet Member for the Environment and Leisure, said:

“The Adur Estuary is a hugely important, beautiful and special place to be enjoyed by those wishing to visit it.

“We must also all remember that the area is home to wildlife and how important it is for the environment and the planet as a whole, but sadly, the Adur, sometimes unwittingly, is under threat from a number of recreational activities.

“The signs, which were funded by Natural England, working in partnership with a range of organisations and wildlife trusts, are designed to raise awareness of the importance of the Adur for wildlife and how to tackle key threats and ensure that we not only preserve it but help it flourish for future generations.”

Paula Daglish, Marine Lead Advisor for Kent, Natural England, said:

“We were really pleased to be able to fund the interpretation panels to help raise awareness of the importance of the Adur Estuary SSSI for wildlife. It also shows how visitors can enjoy the site and help protect habitat and wildlife so the site flourishes for future generations. We look forward to continuing to work in partnership with the range of organisations involved to benefit the Adur Estuary.”

Laura Brook, Conservation Officer for the Sussex Wildlife Trust, added:

“These intertidal habitats are not just great at producing food, they also have a vital role in storing carbon by locking away organic matter in the mud, making them highly efficient carbon sinks and vital in our battle against climate change. It has been great to work in collaboration on this project as raising awareness of these fantastic habitats is essential for their protection.”

Peter King, Director of the Ouse & Adur Rivers Trust, said:

“The strength of the partnership is in its diverse nature, bringing together a wide range of opinions, experience and knowledge of the river environment and using this to galvanise all those who visit, live or work here to protect this unique area into the future and raise awareness and ultimately improve the condition of the Adur Estuary SSSI.”

The new signs include advice to make visitors aware of the habitats and how species such as tiny invertebrates and microscopic algae within the mud, to fish and birds can benefit if protected.

Advice includes keeping to designated footpaths to avoid damaging sensitive plants and trampling saltmarsh and mud or disturbing birds and sticking to the main river channel to limit harming the SSSI when accessing the water, as well as reminding dog walkers to keep their pets close so they don't scare birds off.

Partners involved in the scheme are Sussex Wildlife Trust, Shoreham District Ornithological Society, Sussex Ornithological Society, Experience West Sussex Partnership, Ouse and Adur Rivers Trust, Adur District Council, RSPB (Royal Society for the Protection of Birds), Environment Agency and Natural England.

Anyone who lives near the river can also have their say in a survey which is part of the Adur River Recovery Project, a pioneering scheme to transform farmland close to the Adur into havens for nature has been backed by the government. Please visit:

Photo: Two of the new signs about the Adur Estuary SSSI, next to the River Adur

PR23-107 - One of the new signs about the Adur Estuary SSSI, next to the River Adur

PR23-107 - One of the new signs about the Adur Estuary SSSI, next to the River Adur (2)

Photo - left to right: Jenny Armiger, Environment Agency; Pete King, Environment Agency; Hannah Elms, Natural England; Sam Smithson, Experience West Sussex Partnership; Chloe Clarke, Adur & Worthing Councils; Cllr Carol Albury, Adur District Council; Tony Benton, Shoreham District Ornithological Society; Laura Brook, Sussex Wildlife Trust

PR23-107 - One of the new signs about the Adur Estuary SSSI, next to the River Adur - launch event (1)

Photo - left to right: Laura Brook, Sussex Wildlife Trust; Chloe Clarke, Adur & Worthing Councils; Sam Smithson, Experience West Sussex Partnership; Jenny Armiger, Environment Agency; Tony Benton, Shoreham District Ornithological Society; Cllr Carol Albury, Adur District Council; Pete King, Environment Agency; Hannah Elms, Natural England

PR23-107 - One of the new signs about the Adur Estuary SSSI, next to the River Adur - launch event (2)

(PR23-107)

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Page last updated: 20 February 2024

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