RiverFest: Raising awareness of River Lea pollution while celebrating local community

RiverFest is aiming to raise awareness of the River Lea, one of the unhealthiest rivers in the UK, and support its health moving forward, while bringing together community and celebrating local talent in Tottenham, north east London.

Now in its fifth year, RiverFest takes place at Lordship Recreation Ground in Tottenham this Saturday. RiverFest features live music from local acts including Bollywood Brass Band and Drumworks, and food and drink from local favourites, including Loven Presents, Wildes Cheeses and Redemption Brewery, and Crayfish Bob’s big crayfish boil.

Organisers of the crowd-funded RiverFest festival, Tottenham Ploughman, say: “The RiverFest is a perfect opportunity to bring our communities together. Eat, drink, create, dance, and make our rivers better. [Attendees can] find out what we can all do to stop pollution entering our rivers with our seven pledges.”

The River Lea is often referred to as London’s second river and rivals only the River Thames in terms of its length. The River Lea originates in Marsh Farm, Luton in the Chiltern Hills and flows southeast, through Tottenham Marshes, before heading to east London where it meets the River Thames.

The River Lea is one of the unhealthiest rivers in the country and is in the bottom seven per cent for England. Currently it is going to struggle to meet the next deadline of 2021. While the lower Lea remains polluted, its upper stretch and tributaries, classified as chalk streams, are a major source of drinking water for London.

RiverFest will raise awareness of how the Tottenham communities can help save the polluted river by introducing festival goers to what Tottenham Ploughman refer to as their “Seven Pledges”.

The Seven Pledges include discontinuing the purchasing of plastic bottles and saying no to plastic straws; ensuring home appliances such as washing machines and lavatories are correctly fitted; checking household cleaning products are environmentally friendly; and putting rubbish only in bins and not littering the river.

RiverFest takes place on Saturday 16 September at Lordship Recreation Ground, from 11am to 7pm, entry is free 

Rosa Medea is Life & Soul Magazine’s Chief. She is a writer who specialises in sustainable lifestyle and living, wellbeing, and entertainments. Rosa also works as a psychic, counsellor, intuitive reader and spiritual life coach helping people to become who they truly are and manifest their heart & soul’s desires into their lives: www.rosalindmedea.com

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