The River Lark Catchment

About The River Lark

The River lark areaThe River Lark rises as a chalk stream to the south of Bury St Edmunds and flows North west through Mildenhall to the South Level. Its tributaries include the River Linnet, Culford Stream; Cavenham Stream; Tuddenham Stream and the River Kennet. The area is mainly rural, with many small villages and the market towns of Bury St Edmunds and Mildenhall. Land use is diverse with tree belts and woodlands. In the Lark valley the dryness of the soils has limited their land-use and historically there were extensive heaths, Cavenham Heath is the largest survivor and is now a nature reserve. ( Catchment Summary Environment Agency)

The River Lark is a river in England that crosses the border between Suffolk and Cambridgeshire. It is a tributary of theRiver Great Ouse, and was extended when that river was re-routed as part of drainage improvements. It is thought to have been used for navigation since Roman times, and improvements were made in 1638 and in the early 1700s, when locks and staunches were built. The upper terminus was on the northern edge of Bury St Edmunds, but a new dock was opened near the railway station after the Eastern Union Railway opened its line in 1846.

The navigation was officially abandoned in 1888, but despite this, commercial use of the river continued until 1928. Following acquisition by the Great Ouse Catchment Board, locks at Barton Mills and Icklingham were rebuilt in the 1960s, but were isolated when the A11 road bridge was lowered soon afterwards. It now has one operational lock at Isleham, and can be navigated to Jude’s Ferry. (Wikipedia)