Skip to main content


Title: Old Bedford incorporating the Middle Level and Ouse Washes : consultation report - May 1997
Author: Environment Agency Anglian Region
Document Type: Monograph
The Old Bedford LEAP is the first to be produced by the Central Area of the Environment Agency's Anglian Region. The local area comprises the Ouse Washes and the Middle Level River Systems. Therefore, concerns about the management of the water environment predominate. The main towns are Ramsey, March and Chatteris. The Ouse Washes (32 km from Earith to Denver) were created in the 17th Century to provide storage of floodwater from the Bedford Ouse catchment - so preventing the surrounding Middle and South levels from flooding. As one of the few remaining areas of Washland, the Ouse Washes have become one of the most important designated sites in the country for the nature conservation of migrant bird life. The Middle Level catchment area, 60% of which is fenland and below sea level, is administered by the Middle Level Commissioners (MLC). The area is subdivided into 39 Internal Drainage Districts. The economy of this rural area is dependant on agriculture due to the creation of some of the most productive soils for afable farming in the UK by historic draining of the Fens. The area is mainly within Cambridgeshire,the fastest growing county in Britain, and a small part of Norfolk.
Publisher: Environment Agency
Publication Date: 1997
Publication Place: Peterborough
Subject Keywords: Local action plans (EA)Catchment managementWater qualityNature conservation
Geographic Keywords: CambridgeshireNorfolkOld Bedford including Middle Level catchmentOuse Washes
Extent: 184; + appendices
Total file downloads: 283

Download PDF    Display PDF in separate tab