THE first stage in a project to develop the River Colne is now complete.
The Colne Valley Trust community organisation, which is based in Slaithwaite, has been running the River Colne Project for two years.
Thanks to about £120,000 from the Heritage Lottery Fund and Kirklees Council, the trust has developed the river in many ways.
Project manager Sue Leffman - who is now leaving her post - spoke to Colne Valley residents to discuss the work they wanted doing.
Three "river forums" to gather suggestions were held over the two years.
The first project was to conduct surveys along the river, from its source near Marsden down to Milnsbridge.
The surveys were conducted by local ecologist Darren Sharpe and showed that the pollution was worse the further the river travelled from its source.
Jo Barnes, a member of the trust's board, said this information would be used in maintaining the river and by environmental groups.
Ponds around the Colne Valley were studied this year. Groups of volunteers examined pond locations, water quality, wildlife and plants.
This information will go on the UK's first database of ponds, being set up by the Pond Conservation Trust.
A pond at Slaithwaite C of E School was extended and filled with plants and wildlife by parents, children and governors.
Wooded areas have been planted by volunteers and people doing community service at Marsden and Hey Laithe, between Slaithwaite and Marsden.
Artwork has also played a part.
The Local Heritage Initiative, a scheme supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund, paid for sculpture to celebrate water-related heritage features in the upper Colne Valley.
Marsden people and poet John Duffy created a book of poems about the valley.
Then artist Jason Thompson created a sculpture showing an early water-powered electricity generator which was at Hey Green, Marsden. The sculpture is now at the Hey Green Hotel.
Robin Widowson created a sculpture representing the former Slaithwaite Spa.
It is now at Spa Fields, the site of the original spa.
A survey of Wellhouse's wells was carried out and the results put on the Sites and Monuments Register.
To celebrate all the work, fun days were held. They included writing workshops, story-telling and Riverlab sessions, where Huddersfield New College students showed science to younger children at Tunnel End.
The trust is hoping to create a riverside circular walk between Slaithwaite and Marsden.
Work has been done, with the British Trust of Conservation Volunteers, to clear paths up to Hey Laithe. And working with Milnsbridge Enhancement Group, the Colne Valley Trust has created a riverside beauty spot, clearing rubbish and building a wall and seat.