Project Kingfisher is our educational programme for schools, designed to challenge children to learn more about their local river, its history, wildlife and the role we can all play in protecting rivers for the future.
With funding from the Greggs Foundation, we are expanding our education programme to engage schools across south London – not just on the River Wandle, but also the Hogsmill and Beverley Brook.
There are many elements of the National Curriculum which can be taught using rivers to help bring lessons to life, while engaging with their local environment. A trip to the local river provides great learning opportunities to find out about river habitats and wildlife, river features and processes, to investigate water quality and to delve into local history.
Choose your local river!
The River Wandle is famous in south London, where it’s known to have been one of the hardest-working rivers in the world, with around 90 mills powered by the fast flowing chalkstream water. The river gave rise to local industry, making all sorts of products from flour to paper to textiles, such as the beautiful designs of William Morris and Liberty.
The Hogsmill rises in Ewell and joins the Thames in Kingston. The river is classified as a chalkstream and as such is a seriously threatened habitat, with only 200 remaining worldwide. Like the Wandle, the Hogsmill was used to power local industry, particularly gunpowder works. The river has also inspired many famous paintings, including Ophelia by John Millais.
The Beverley Brook can be easily overlooked by some as it flows through two famous green spaces in south London, Richmond Park and Wimbledon Common. The word “Beverley” means “Beaver’s Ley” and so it is thought that beavers used to live on the brook.