How the AP-5000 helped the BBC Countryfile team conduct important tests along the River Lynher

Here at Aquaread, we pride ourselves on our ability to provide water testing equipment for projects all over the world. We love hearing about how our products have helped our customers conduct important water tests to better monitor and improve our planet’s waters – no matter how big or small.

One such project occurred last month when we were approached by the team behind the popular British television programme, Countryfile. The television show has long been dedicated to raising awareness around rural, agricultural and environmental issues, so we were delighted when we were approached to help provide water testing equipment for an upcoming episode of the show.

The River Lynher

Situated near Cornwall in the South West of England, the River Lynher is a 21-mile long river with several famous landmarks situated along it, including the famous 18th century Antony Estate. It is also currently home to a small group of Royal Navy boats, as part of the river is currently used to help train recruits stationed there.

With so much activity on and around the river, concerns had been raised about the impact it might be having on the quality of the river itself. The Royal Navy team currently stationed along it have pledged to ensure their work doesn’t negatively impact the environment:

“We have a routine to ensure that this environment, which is an area of natural beauty, is kept in pristine condition,” explains Lieutenant Commander Andy Taylor.

“If there is any spillage of any sort we have a well-versed routine where we can mop that up and keep it contained.”

Spillages are one area of concern but other factors, such as litter, agricultural runoff and other large scale operations in the area all run the risk of lowering the water quality of the river.

With this in mind, a group of volunteers from the Antony Estate, accompanied by Countryfile presenter Anita Rani, set out with our AP-5000 water testing equipment to find out how the river’s water quality was faring.

Water testing with the AP-5000

The team headed to a secluded area of the river to conduct their water tests with the AP-5000. Equipped with turbidity and nitrate electrodes, the team aimed to test the river’s water quality, oxygen concentrations, pH and the presence of any pollutants in the water.

Once in position, the AP-5000 was dropped into the water and returned an instant reading.

Much to the team’s delight, the results found that the impact of both the Antony Estate and Royal Navy had been minimal. Not only was the pH of the river found to be at safe levels but there were only small traces of contaminants found:

“We couldn’t have asked for a better day to do it and it’s a positive result from the Aquaprobe with low levels of nitrates and sediments all along the river,” said BBC presenter Anita Rani.

“Today, that is a particularly good reading,” explained Land and Property Manager of Antony Estate, Ian Rideout.

“We’re not having a major impact. It’s showing that we are not seeing a huge proportion of nitrates in the river.”
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These important water tests were the first time the Antony Estate had the opportunity to test their concerns about the water quality of the river. Now the first tests have been completed, the team has confirmed it is something they will continue to do routinely:

“We’ll do this every year,” said Ian Rideout.

“I think it will be something that we now need to do, and then compare those readings every year and see what those differences are because this is going to give us the benchmark we need.”

We look forward to helping the team again in the future.  You can watch the full episode on BBC iPlayer but if you just want to catch the AP-5000 in action, you can catch the intro at the beginning of the show then the testing procedure from the 27-minute mark.

For more information on how our water testing equipment can help you with your water testing project, view our range of products, or get in contact with us today.