River Ray Catchment

Please join your local wildlife trust today

Please join your local wildlife trust today

Please join your local wildlife trust today

Meadow Farm by Colin WilliamsMeadow Farm by Colin Williams

BBOWT’s Upper River Ray Living Landscape project sits within the larger area of the River Ray catchment (the area of land drained by the River Ray).

A catchment is an area of land where water collects when it rains, usually bounded by an area of higher ground. As the water flows over the landscape it finds its way into streams and down into the soil, eventually feeding the river. Some of this water stays underground and continues to slowly feed the river in times of low rainfall. Every inch of land on the Earth forms part of a catchment. The River Ray flows into the Cherwell which then flows into the Thames.

River Ray Catchement map

BBOWT is working on a catchment based project with our partners. By pooling expertise and resources, this group is able to consider all aspects of the catchment characteristics such as flora and fauna, water quality, land use and channel modifications.

Our vision for the Ray catchment is for the development of a more natural landscape with unpolluted waters that will sustainably support wildlife typical of the area, is resilient to future pressures and is an attractive place for people to work, live and visit.

To achieve this vision we will aim to:

Aerial photo by Environment AgencyRestore and create a naturally functioning river/groundwater system that is improving. In doing so we will be delivering more environmental services locally, such as improved water quality, increased recreational opportunities, flood alleviation and reduced problems associated with low summer water flows.



Small tortoiseshell by Andy FairbairnRestore and create a wildlife-rich landscape that will offer opportunities for wildlife to thrive and to adapt to the likely outcomes of climate change such as summer drought, increased flooding in winter, and increased frequency of exceptional events such as summer rainstorms through utilising wildlife corridors.



Green hay spreading at Gallows Bridge Farm by BBOWTWork in partnership with local business including farmers working the land for a livelihood, other landowners, groups and clubs in creating a landscape that will enhance the attractions of the area for people to live, work and visit. 

Living Landscapes for all

A Living Landscape

Read our recovery plan for nature.


Wychnor Washland by Nick Mott

The UK’s freshwater wetlands and waterways range from small ponds and trickling streams to gushing rivers and massive reservoirs. Freshwater habitats are rich with underwater wildlife and also support huge numbers of plants, insects and birds, that live on and around their edges. Find out about wetlands and waterways.


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Snakeshead Fritillaries Survey by BBOWT

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