Wandle Discovery Day

A South East Rivers Trust 20-year celebration during London Rivers Week

20 year anniversary of the South East Rivers TrustJoin us for a fun-filled Wandle Discovery Day on Saturday 16th July, as the South East Rivers Trust (SERT) celebrates its 20th anniversary during London Rivers Week.

Several events will be running from Merton Abbey Mills to Poulter Park, giving you the chance to don waders and find out what’s in the river, or learn about the wildlife and industrial history through a range of activities.

Celebrating our history and the Wandle's too

On Wandle Discovery Day, SERT will host events with several other partners, including the National Trust, the Environment Agency, the Wandle Industrial Museum, the Wandle Piscators and Merton Priory Trust.

So come and explore the Wandle, find out what lives in the river and how to protect it, whether through pond dipping and underwater cameras, fishing demonstrations, guided history walks or taking part in a cleanup! 

Stalls will be open from 10am-3pm but some activities run at specific times and must be booked in advance.

The day is part of SERT’s 20-year celebrations of conserving and protecting rivers on the catchment where our work began – as the Wandle Trust. With the public’s help, we have evolved into an organisation that works across 12 catchments, from the Loddon in the west to Kent in the east and down to the south coast.

Find out more below or download our handy leaflet.

The Wandle Discovery Day will take place on July 16th

SERT info stall at Merton Abbey Mills and tours

On the day, you’ll be able to drop in any time to the South East Rivers Trust’s information stall at Merton Abbey Mills.

You’ll be able to learn about the river and snap up spaces on guided walks and tours.

You can also book in advance for tours of Merton Abbey Mills and the Priory Chapter House.

Led by John Hawkes of the Merton Priory Trust, these will help you discover the fascinating history of the site and explore the nearby remains of the Merton Priory Chapter House.

Tours will run at 11am and 1pm and last approximately 1.5hrs. Book in advance on the SERT events page.

A tour of Merton Abbey Mills is part of the Wandle Discovery Day © Wandle Industrial Museum

Guided walk: The Industrial History of the Wandle

Led by John Sheridan of the Wandle Industrial Museum, this walk starts in Morden Hall Park and finishes in Merton Abbey Mills. 

Starting with the history of Taddy & Co, you will learn about the links with the textile industry that existed on this section of the Wandle from the 1700s. The walk will finish at Merton Abbey Mills, which was home to the last textile works on the river. 

Meet at the Snuff Mills at 11am. The walk will take approximately 1.5hrs. 

Booking essential and spaces are limited, please email John to secure your spot: john.sheridan08@gmail.com

A tour of the Wandle Industrial Museum will be part of the Wandle Discovery Day © Wandle Industrial Museum

Wandle wildlife: River dipping, underwater camera and live fish display

Visit the Environment Agency’s stand in Morden Hall Park, a National Trust property, to take a look at what’s living in the river! 

View fish from the Wandle in a live display tank, watch them in their natural habitat via an underwater camera or take a look at some of the smaller critters that call the river home on display in the river dipping trays. 

The stall is open all day from 10am-3pm, no booking required.

River dipping © South East River Trust

Guided walk: In channel river tour

Don a pair of waders and join SERT staff to experience a unique perspective of the river, from in the channel!

This short walk will last approximately 45 minutes and will take in some recent restoration work. 

Book in advance on our events page, or sign up on the day at the SERT info stall at Merton Abbey Mills.

An in channel walk is part of the Wandle Discovery Day

Introducing fishing - and a river cleanup

The varied lineup of events continues with:

Introduction to fishing, Ravensbury Park

Drop by anytime from 10am to 3pm to meet the Wandle Piscators and learn more about fishing on the Wandle. 

River cleanup sessions, Poulter Park

Join the South East Rivers Trust to help clear rubbish and plastic pollution from the river. 

Sessions 10am-12pm and 1pm-3pm. 

Booking in advance is essential, sign-up on our events page

The Wandle Discovery Day will offer people the chance to be involved in a cleanup at Poulter Park © South East Rivers Trust

About London Rivers Week

London Rivers Week, now in its seventh year, is a week-long annual campaign inspiring the public to connect with and appreciate London’s rivers and the work to restore them. 

Partners include Thames21, SERT, Thames Water, the Environment Agency, London Wildlife Trust, the Greater London Authority, The Thames Estuary Partnership and the Zoological Society of London.

The programme includes educational, cultural and recreational activities as well as highlighting work that will contribute to the natural recovery of rivers.