Floating island installed in Hastings park to combat toxic algae

Hastings Borough Council has installed a floating island in Shornden Reservoir in a bid to improve the quality of water in Alexandra Park
Hastings Borough Council has installed a floating island in Shornden Reservoir in a bid to improve the quality of water in Alexandra Park

Hastings Borough Council has installed a floating island in Shornden Reservoir in a bid to improve the quality of water in Alexandra Park.

Colin Fitzgerald, lead councillor for environmental services said: “The skilfully constructed island is like those installed in the lower park three years ago.

Hastings Borough Council has installed a floating island in Shornden Reservoir in a bid to improve the quality of water in Alexandra Park

Hastings Borough Council has installed a floating island in Shornden Reservoir in a bid to improve the quality of water in Alexandra Park

“The floating island is pre-planted with aquatic plants and has been fitted with a cage to take barley straw during the warmer months.

“For many years the water in this area of the park has been affected by blue green algae, which naturally occurs in many waters nationally.

“The barley straw breaks down to release a natural substance which helps reduce the build-up of algae.”

He added: “The bloom that the algae produce can be harmful to animals and people.

“The council with the Environment Agency monitor the waters for signs of the blue green algae and the council will advise the public if and when any future outbreaks are confirmed.

“The island will be a great habitat to wildlife and help promote beneficial microbes and filtrate the water through the plants roots.

“This will allow silts and other water born particles to be broken down.”

For more information on bathing water quality visit https://environment.data.gov.uk/bwq