An Appeal from WUF's Chairman

Elizabeth Passey My personal involvement with The Wye and Usk Foundation started in 2001 when I volunteered as a fund-raiser for an area of the Wye catchment with which my family had historical ties. Very quickly, the number and variety of threats facing our rivers, their ecology and those who depend upon them, became apparent. It might be difficult to imagine the Wye or Usk as "vulnerable" as they thunder past you in full spate but numerous pressures are taking a heavy toll on the ecology of these two beautiful rivers and their wildlife. I resolved to do something about it.

The Foundation and its partners began tackling these challenges in 1996 and now, against a national decline in fish stocks and biodiversity, our rivers are bucking the trend. Most people with an affiliation to the Wye and Usk now agree that they are in recovery mode and everyone who has supported the work so far can be very proud of themselves for helping to accomplish that.

In recent years, the remit has widened to include the concept of whole catchment management, although the physical restoration of the aquatic ecosystem still remains central to our work. Promotion of fishing and tourism, volunteer work and other initiatives have all brought the benefits of healthier rivers to our local communities and economies.

But we cannot allow the Rivers Wye and Usk to slip back into their former state of neglect, something that could so easily happen. Our vision is for a strong, financially stable and independent rivers trust that can maintain the existing work and face up to new challenges and threats that will undoubtedly lie ahead. Without such an organisation, the two rivers will very soon revert to their previous, precarious state.

The Foundation has the experience, expertise and determination to identify and tackle the issues. We need your help urgently and I encourage you to support an organisation with a history and culture of putting the delivery of its objectives at the very top of its priorities. I ask that anyone who has enjoyed the rivers (or knows someone who has) helps us to protect them, not just for the present but for future generations too.

So please contribute, help us to continue to make a difference and become part of our success story.

With all good wishes and many thanks in advance.

Elizabeth Passey
Chairman of Trustees and supporter of The Wye & Usk Foundation