Wandle Valley

Flowing from Waddon and Carshalton through to the Thames at Wandsworth, the Wandle reputedly once supported the highest density of water mills of any river in England, acting as a source of industry.

Originally a fast-flowing chalk stream that was able to support a watercress industry, subsequent pollution and changes to the profile of the river (through toe-boarding and culverting), drainage and development reduced its value to wildlife.

Subsequently much improved through active conservation effort, the Wandle now supports fish and other wildlife, but still flows through significant stretches of industry, residential areas and commercial centres.
There is a lot of activity along the Wandle to further improve the river and its environs for wildlife, heritage and amenity.
This includes the development of the Wandle Valley Regional Park, the All London Green Grid Area Framework, the WFD Catchment Plan, and the Living Wandle Landscape Partnership project, of which London Wildlife Trust is a partner.
The Trust has focused its recent efforts on habitat restoration in-stream and on Wilderness Island, and developing a strategy for the future reintroduction of water vole.