Stop the Chop and Portsmouth Water work together to save local trees

Members of local group, Stop the Chop, are working together with Portsmouth Water to relocate 80 trees from within the Havant Thicket Reservoir site.

As part of the project’s award-winning stakeholder engagement work, members of Stop the Chop were invited to Portsmouth Water’s Head Office to explore opportunities to enhance environmental protection works associated with the Havant Thicket Reservoir.

Dave Childs from Stop the Chop had identified a number of young trees which they believed could be relocated from the Avenue and replanted elsewhere.

Following a number of on-site meetings with members of Stop the Chop, Portsmouth Water is taking forward plans to relocate 80 trees from the Avenue.

The trees will remain in situ while some of the main tree removal works takes place this Autumn. This will give them time to gain strength and improve in shape before they are relocated next year to local areas near to the Havant Thicket Reservoir site.

Dave Childs of Stop the Chop, said: “We appreciate the opportunity to work with Portsmouth Water and save these trees. They will help to establish new wildlife corridors and provide a small legacy for the loss of The Avenue.

“We hope to continue to work with Portsmouth Water and our aim is to help to make the Reservoir and Havant Thicket a diverse environment that allows nature to thrive.”

Bob Taylor, Chief Executive Officer, Portsmouth Water, said: “I would like to thank members of Stop the Chop, particularly Dave Childs, for the tremendous amount of work they have undertaken in order to identify these 80 trees for relocation.

“Like Portsmouth Water, I know that Stop the Chop care passionately about their local environment. I am grateful for their constructive suggestions and support at this critical stage of the project.”

Communication and engagement with local stakeholders, like Stop the Chop, is a vital part of the Havant Thicket Reservoir project. This October 2021, the project won an award for best practice in stakeholder engagement from the Chartered Institute of Ecology and Environmental Management.

The first stage of work on Havant Thicket Reservoir involves tree removal activities. These start in October 2021 with the potential to continue into November, depending on weather conditions. Some further work may be required in 2022.

In order to mitigate against this, Portsmouth Water is planting and improving more than 200 hectares of woodland and wood pasture locally. The water company has already planted 6,000 new trees and is creating new wildlife corridors along the site boundaries.

The relocation of 80 trees identified by Stop the Chop will be in addition to these mitigation measures.

Havant Thicket Reservoir is fundamentally an environmentally-led project. As well as providing new habitats for wildlife including a wetland to the northern shore of the reservoir,

the project will secure vital water resources for the South East and help protect the world-renowned chalk streams of the River Test and the River Itchen in Hampshire.

The reservoir, which is being funded by Southern Water, will provide a new sustainable source of water that provides additional drought resilience for the South East.

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For more information about the reservoir, visit:

Further information about Havant Thicket Reservoir’s award for best practice in stakeholder engagement from the Chartered Institute of Ecology and Environmental Management is available here:

Contact Portsmouth Water with any questions or concerns by calling 023 9249 9888 or emailing us at: [email protected].