An update regarding the fish pass at Milheugh.
The club committee was invited and attended a meeting with RAFTS, SEPA and South Lanarkshire Council, at Milheugh on the 27th July.
From the information presented to us the parties involved are working on a plan going forward but no set timescales could be given for the start and completion of the remedial works that will inevitably take place. As this is the case the cofferdam will remain in place until such times as the remedial works are complete.
The question was asked if the cofferdam could be removed until such times as a solution and resources had been finalised and work was ready to commence. Although the concrete blocks have been lifted back into place they haven't been further secured, so if the cofferdam is removed then any potential spates could dislodge the blocks again. Also if the cofferdam is removed then there is no guarantee it will be available to be installed again when works are ready to commence, which would set the project back even further.
People have also been asking why the lade wasn't used in the first instance and also why it can't be used as a temporary measure while the cofferdam is in place. The companies that carried out the initial assessment and preliminary designs deemed it unsuitable, hence why it was never used. As it was never foreseen that the structure would fail then there is no allowance available to make temporary alterations to the lade in the meantime.
In regards to why there has not been a fish pass installed at Craig bridge. Many years ago members of the AAC created a fish pass at the weir. This weir has fallen into disrepair and is now not functioning. From the data help by SEPA this weir was deemed to be passable, which is why nothing has been carried out so far. This will be something that will hopefully be revisited in the future.
Although this is frustrating for everyone involved, all parties want the same outcome and to see the fish pass completed and operational as soon as possible.
I hope this answers some of the questions that people keep asking. But in the meantime, if any members have any another other questions or issues to raise then please either come to the monthly meetings to raise them or by emailing the club via webmaster@theavonanglingclub. co.uk. As you'll appreciate it is impossible for the club to monitor everything everyone posts on their own Facebook so unless questions are sent directly to us we will be unable to respond to them.
We will give further updates as and when we get any new information.