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Immersion: A Strategic Framework for Eco-recreation in British Waters

Date uploaded: April 23, 2009

An independent report, "Immersion: A Strategic Framework for Eco-recreation in British Waters", has been launched today on www.ruralrecreation.org.uk.

In these cash strapped times there are over 20 disused lidos, architectural gems in Britain's cities and resorts, that are ripe for regeneration as new marine centres for the provision of recreation and education about water ecology.

During this recession underutilised lidos could become sustainable fish farms for major urban centres, reducing the UK's reliance on unsustainable north sea fisheries and foreign imports. These facilities could be self funding as visitor attractions if they allowed people to come there to fish, dive or swim next to the wildlife.

Multipurpose facilities could also provide security for UK wildlife against threats from highly invasive foreign species such as the American Signal Crayfish, the Chinese Mitten Crab and the Asian Topmouth Gudgeon. The UK urgently needs to raise awareness of biosecurity in this country as native species are being wiped out. Lidos are perfect, ready-made, places to create for centres to regulate invasive species spread by showing the public in the problem, encouraging them to report biosecurity incidents.

Immersion is published in advance of the Marine and Coastal Access Bill which calls for better access to, and treatment of, our seas. The Bill is now in the committee stages in Parliament. It is also a response to the "Invasive Non Natives Species Framework Strategy for Great Britain", launched by DEFRA, the Scottish Government and the Welsh Assembly in May 2008, which calls for greater public awareness of this ecological time bomb.

The project was initiated by artist Alex Murdin from University College Falmouth, in collaboration with the Marine Institute, University of Plymouth, the National Marine Aquarium, Childs Sulzmann architects and funded by Gunpowder Park Bright Sparks 3 - curated by Haring Woods Associates.

An action research project is now in development which aims to pilot practical projects based on the report during 2009 / 2010 with Aune Head Arts in Devon.

We are actively seeking support, volunteers, funding etc and for this project so if you want to comment on the project, are interested in taking part or helping in any other way please email [email protected] for more information.

Follow this link to download the Report

Concept design for permanent Marine Invasive/Unwanted Migrant Species Repository,

Concept design for permanent Marine Invasive/Unwanted Migrant Species Repository,