Severn Trent meets with the Friends of the Meadow to discuss £3.6million Chester river investment 

8th November 2023

The Friends of the Meadows in Chester had an insightful meeting with Severn Trent to discuss its £3.6m investment in the River Dee.

The group met with Project Manager, Dan Addison, and Community Communications Officer, Catherine Webb to find out more about the replacement of eel screens that is currently underway.

A total of £3.6million is being invested on improvements which will see upgraded, fish friendly, eel screens installed at The Meadows in Chester on the River Dee. 

The screens are being installed in raw water intakes where water is taken from before being turned into drinking water and will mean the different types of eels such as adult silver eels, yellow eels, juvenile glass eels and elver, as well as other types of fish and wildlife are protected.  
The meeting was a chance for the volunteers to ask questions, learn more about the project, how the work is going, and they may have learned a thing or two about the meadows and the River Dee that they didn’t know before.

Rachel Cross of Friends of the Meadows, said: “We welcomed this opportunity to meet with the team from Severn Trent and learn more about the eel screens installation. We were impressed at the detail of the project and were able to appreciate the need for the extensive works involved and how it will benefit the river’s wildlife. We hope it will be concluded with minimum disruption to Meadows users.”

The Friends of the Meadows are a group of people living within the Chester community with the primary aim of supporting the management of the meadows. The group was initially set up in 1980 and called the Meadow Users Association. 

In 1984 the association was formalised into Friends of the Meadows making sure it is treated as an important area of local nature conservation, with an emphasis on wildlife and recreation value.

Severn Trent’s work is now progressing on installing the screens and it is expected to be complete by the end of March 2025. The screens will be below the water level and only a small amount of air pipework will be seen. 

Due to the location of the working area, the riverside footpath will continue to be closed to keep everybody safe. 

Catherine Webb, Community Communications Officer at Severn Trent, said: “It was great to meet with the team from the Friends of the Meadows, find out about how the group works to care for The Meadows and speak to them about the eel screens project.

“The meeting was a chance to make sure that they are kept fully informed about the work, its progress and how replacing the screens will have a massive benefit for the wildlife of the River Dee and the area. We hope to continue working with the group as work continues.”

For further information about the Friends of the Meadows, the work that they do and how to get involved, visit

Visit the Severn Trent ‘Planned Improvements’ webpage to see how the work is progressing at