Wear Rivers Trust Staff Update


Steve Hudson, Senior Project Officer, left the Trust on 24 April 2020.


Since the Covid 19 restrictions were implemented, staff have worked hard to tie up year-end activities and to plan and prepare for when restrictions are relaxed sufficiently to allow for the resumption of practical field work. However, in order to preserve project funding for when practical works can recommence staff have agreed to furlough from 1 May 2020, for a minimum of 3 weeks, and potentially to 30th June 2020, which may be varied, depending upon government policy. The staff furloughed are:


· Lucy Lovett, Education Officer,

· Paul Atkinson, Project Officer

· Martin Colling, Project Officer

· Helen Richardson, Administrator

· Rebekah Bainbridge, Project Support Officer 

· Bethan Rogers, Project Support Officer. 


Rebekah and Bethan will be using the time for training to remotely attend the Cranfield University Nature Based Solutions training https://www.cranfield.ac.uk/courses/short/water/nature-based-solutions-for-water-and-land-management 

Kirstie Hutchinson, Office and Business Development Manager and Peter Nailon will remain at work to maintain core functions and to continue to plan for post-Corvid 19 activity.

If you have any queries please email Admin@wear-rivers-trust.org.uk and we will respond as soon as we can.


Peter Nailon

Trust Director

**COVID19 Update**

There's much to see here. So, take your time, look around, and learn all there is to know about us. We hope you enjoy our site and take a moment to drop us a line. 


Safety guidelines for Invasive Species walkovers v3 (COVID19) (docx)


RA COVID19 herbicide treatment (docx)


lone working policy volunteers (docx)


Mission Statement

The mission of the Wear Rivers Trust is to conserve, protect, rehabilitate and improve the landscape and watercourses of the whole River Wear catchment, from the watershed to the estuarine and adjacent coastal areas, through involving individuals, local communities, government agencies

and public bodies with proactive improvement works and monitoring and by increasing awareness and understanding of the environmental factors that influence the river and its associated wildlife, whilst helping to promote the river as a recreational feature for the enjoyment of all.

If you are concerned about something you have seen on the river or you just want to let us know something drop us a message!

WRT Office: Innovation House, Bishop Auckland, DL14 6XB.

Tel:  01388 488867  

Pollution Incident Hotline

Further more pollution incidents can be reported directly to the Environment Agency by calling 

0800 80 70 60


The Trust is a member of The Rivers Trust (formerly The Association of River Trusts) and works with the local community throughout the catchment of the Wear from the source in Upper Weardale to the coast to conserve, protect, restore and improve the rivers and streams of the catchment.

One of the key aims is to raise awareness of the value of the River Wear, including its flora, fauna, social and economic benefits, and to help people understand the need for conservation and restoration, as well as to promote exploration and enjoyment of this precious resource.

Our Staff and Trustees


Managing Director: Peter Nailon

Peter Nailon has worked with the Trust since its creation, becoming full-time director in August 2012. He attended the London School of Economics 1977-1981, then spent 2 years working on farms in Australia. On returning to the UK he worked in Logistics until 2006 when he moved into the environmental sector. He managed a dry stone walling apprenticeship scheme before moving on to Lantra where he was project manager for the LandSkills North East agriculture and forestry training, reporting to ONE North East under the Rural Development Programme for England 2008-2012. 


Education and Community Engagement Officer: Lucy Lovett

Lucy joined the Trust in April 2015 on a part-time  basis to  work with on our educational projects including Mayfly in the Classroom and river-based field trips. She also co-ordinates our Riverfly monitoring network. Lucy has degrees in zoology and ecology and has conducted research into duck population with Newcastle University and The Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust. She also studied otter habitat use with Aberdeen University. She has a broad conservation background having worked for a variety of wildlife and conservation organisations including Natural England, the RSPB and most recently the Durham Biodiversity Partnership.


Project Officer: Paul Atkinson

Paul joined the Trust in Setpember 2016, working primarily on river restoration projects throughout the catchment. Paul has degrees in Environmental Biology and Environmental Management and has a particular interest in freshwater ecology. Paul has previously worked for the Environment Agency and Tyne Rivers Trust and has a passion for improving rivers for people and wildlife.


Office and Business Development Manager: Kirstie Hutchinson

Kirstie has worked for the Trust since June 2017 in the capacity of Office and Business Development Manager. She has a strong financial background working as a Financial Controller for a PLC in the Nuclear sector for 10 years then more recently running her own business. She is a qualified Accounting Technician as well as having management qualifications. Outside of work Kirstie enjoys the outdoors and tending to her horses.


Topsoil Project Officer: Martin Colling

Martin joined the Trust in September 2017 to work primarily on the  EU Intereg Topsoil Project. Having spent his working life in I.T. Martin decided in 2012 to change career and pursue a degree in Geology (UCC), followed by a MSc in Hydrogeology and Water Management (Newcastle University). Martin's primary interests are Hydrogeological Modelling, Mine Water Remediation & Fracture Flow Mechanics.


Office Administrator: Helen Richardson

 Helen joined the Trust in February 2019 as the part time Office Administrator. She has a strong secretarial background of knowledge and experience in office procedures and protocols which will aid and enable the Trust office to run efficiently. 


Project Support Officer: Rebekah Bainbridge

Rebekah joined the Trust in January 2020 as a Project Support Officer. She has a degree in Environmental Geography and an MSc in Ecology and Wildlife Conservation. Rebekah has previous experience of working with volunteers to carry out habitat improvement and is particularly passionate about conserving the uplands for the benefit of both wildlife and future generations. 


Project Support Officer: Bethan Rogers

Beth joined the trust in 2020, as Project Support Officer. She has a degree in Environmental Science with a focus on biodiversity and ecology. She has a broad background in conservation, having volunteered and worked for several environmental charities. Beth has a broad experience ranging from Wildflower Surveys for Northumberland National Park Authority to Loggerhead Turtle conservation in Greece. In her spare time, she pursues many outdoor activities including climbing and mountaineering and is passionate about enhancing river habitats for both wildlife and people. 


  • Martyn Lucas (Chair)       
  • Neil Ashforth (Secretary)
  • Ceri Gibson
  • Bob Kirton-Darling      
  • Darron Nixon            
  • Joyce Moxon
  • David Hutchinson            
  • George Gerring