Angling in the rural environment - ecology and geomorphology data, 2007-2009

This dataset consists of an ecology-focused survey of stillwaters along the rivers Yure and Swale and sediment flux measurements recorded at sites along the river Esk. The dataset results from a study which was part of the Rural Economy and Land Use (RELU) programme. The project analysed the complex network of natural and socio-economic relationships around angling in the river environment, including institutions of governance and land use practices at a range of interconnected scales. The sustainability, integrity and ecological value of river catchments are currently major issues for science. The management of freshwaters and their ecologies requires addressing processes that work across the boundaries between the natural environment, economy and society. This research focused upon these cross-cutting processes in an interdisciplinary, holistic assessment of river environments through the case of angling. Angling benefits from and influences river quality, design and management. It also links urban and rural environments and is an economic driver for the rural economy, involving about 4 million people in England and Wales and contributing 6 billion pounds to the economy through freshwater angling alone. This research aimed to provide insights into how environmental and socio-economic drivers for rural change work. This project therefore aimed to identify and analyse the complex network of influences and feedbacks around angling in the rural environment. These include natural and socio-economic influences, interdisciplinary research from both natural and social science disciplines (aquatic ecology, geomorphology, anthropology, sociology, human geography), as well as stakeholders from government, NGOs and the local community. This project focused upon three rivers in northern England - the Esk, Ure and Swale - in the course of an integrated and fine-grained study. The postal survey and business interviews from this study are available at the UK Data Archive under study number 6580 (see online resources). Further documentation for this study may be found through the RELU Knowledge Portal and the project's ESRC funding award web page (see online resources).

Publication date: 2009-10-21


Study area
Temporal extent
2004-05-01    to    2009-06-01

Supplemental information

Other useful information regarding this dataset:

Provenance & quality

Research funded by Economic and Social Research Council, Natural Environment Research Council and Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council. Award Number: RES-227-25-0002 The sediment flux (geomorphology) data set consists of measurements of the weight of sediment trapped (g) using Time Integrated Mass Flux Samplers (TIMS) at 22 sites in the River Esk, North Yorkshire, UK. Samplers consisted of 1 m length plastic polypipe tubes of 10 cm diameter fitted with a streamlined intake at the front end of the sampler and a streamlined exhaust downstream. The samplers were secured to the river bed by attaching the tubes with plastic grip ties to two metal supporting struts driven into the substrate. The upstream sampling intake was positioned at approximately 0.1 m above the stream bed. Water entering the intake nozzle was rapidly slowed in the main chamber where sediment settles out. Samplers were left in the river for a fixed period during which time they accumulated suspended sediment moving with the flow. Samplers were periodically emptied into 5 l containers which, on returning to the laboratory, were emptied into glass settling tanks to allow the sediment to settle out at room temperature. Excess water was then drawn off and the volume of liquid measured and filtered through Whatman glass fibre (GFA 1.6 μm) filter paper to determine the suspended sediment concentration (if any) of the water. The sediment in the settling tank was then washed into a suitably sized glass beaker using distilled water and oven dried at 105 oC. The dry sediment was weighed. The total sediment mass of the sample was then calculated by adding the dry weight of the sediment to the sediment mass calculated from the concentration recorded in the excess water. The file contains coordinates for the location of each sampling site and dates at which TIMS were emptied and measured. No documentation for the stillwaters (ecological) survey data set accompanied the data deposit.

Correspondence/contact details

Oughton, E.
Newcastle University


Whitman, G.
University of Newcastle-upon-Tyne. School of Agriculture, Food and Rural Development. Centre for Rural Economy
Wheelock, J.
University of Newcastle-upon-Tyne. School of Geography, Politics and Sociology

Other contacts

Oughton, E.
Newcastle University
Bracken, L.
University of Durham. Department of Geography
Lucas, M.
University of Durham. School of Biological and Biomedical Sciences


Spatial reference system
WGS 84


Topic categories
Biota , Economy , Environment
Land use
Angling in the Rural Environment,  aquatic animals,  ecology,  environmental conservation,  environmental issues,  environmental legislation,  environmental management,  environmental quality,  Esk (river),  fishing (sport),  fishing industry,  fishing rights,  human environment,  lakes,  landscape,  land use,  leisure time activities,  North Yorkshire,  outdoor pursuits,  RELU,  rivers,  rural areas,  rural development,  rural economics,  Rural Economy and Land Use Programme,  rural environment,  rural planning,  rural sociology,  sustainable development,  Swale (river),  Ure (river),  water recreational areas,  water resources,  water sports