Pond work pulling in the spectators

Warsop carrs. Phil Shields
Warsop carrs. Phil Shields

Major work to de-silt a pond in Warsop is proving quite a draw for locals, as scores of spectators turn up daily to check on its progress.

Contractors are busy removing tonnes of silt and mud from the bed of the drained Mill Pond on The Carrs - work that finally got underway last month after spending years on the drawing board.

Heavy plant machinery is being used in the day-to-day task of clearing the pond bed, and Warsop and Mansfield district councillor, Phil Shields, has become a regular at the pond in recent weeks.

“It’s brilliant, there are people here every day,” he said.

“Every time I come down here there’s always others eager to see what the latest is.

“There must 40 people here every day bringing down their flasks and their sarnies!

“It shows how many people care about what is happening down here.”

Work on the pond has taken years to come to fruition. Last de-silted in the 1980s, there has been a steady build up.

Funding issues have plagued the project involving Mansfield District Council, the Environment Agency, Friends of the Carrs and Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust.

Last year a £67,000 dredging job of the silt trap saw just 50 tonnes being removed, and the agencies involved were left blaming each other for the outcome.

This latest work is being funded by Mansfield District Council and it is expected that thousands of tonnes will be cleared by the time the work is completed.

Just under a month ago the area was fenced off, the fish were removed and the water pumped out to begin the de-silting process.

Work is ahead of schedule, largely down to the efforts of local contractors A&V Squires, according to Coun Shields.

“They have been brilliant, they have gone over and above what is expected of them,” he said.

“There was a lot of rain which put them back a few days but it’s phenomenal what they’ve done.

“We thought it would hold them back but they’ve just gone on with it and it looks like it could be finished before we predicted next month”

There had been concerns about the amount the amount of fish that had not been removed and perished when the water was drained, but Coun Shields said they have worked closely with experts.

“We are getting a few concerns over habitats and wildlife but they’ve all been addressed by the Environment Agency and they’re happy with what we are doing.”