Protecting the River Ems

Gillian is working with local councillors, Cllr. Mike Magill, and Cllr. Roy Briscoe, from WSCC and CDC respectively, as well as, the community to reduce the rate of water abstraction from the River Ems, that runs through her constituency.

There is a local community group FOTE, or Friends of the River Ems, which has been established to save the river. If you want to be a friend of the River Ems and its streams, please get involved by signing up as a supporter. Email 

The Ems, one of only about 200 such chalk streams globally.  Currently, water is abstracted by Portsmouth Water from the underground sources of the Ems, this campaign is working to support the communities efforts to support wildlife, rare habitats and an important resource for local people by better understanding the impact of abstraction and bring forward changes to these rates to protect the river.

For more information on FOTE click here.

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Supporting our rural and coastal communities

Gillian works to support rural communities and businesses. Gillian represents a large part of the South Downs National Park and coastline from Chichester Harbour AONB to the Pagham Nature reserve that includes the Port of Selsey.


Gillian continues work to save The River Ems

Gillian has continued her support for the Friends of the River Ems community campaign this week. In a meeting with the water regulator, Ofwat, on Friday the MP raised her concern with the over-abstraction of the river by Portsmouth Water Company.

Further information on the River Ems

Gillian has made further enquiries to the Environment Agency. See the answers to her questions below.

When is the River Basin Management Plan (RBMP) expected to be published – and please can we have a copy of your findings when it is?

Response from the Environment Agency

Below is the response from James Humphrys, Area Director at the Environment Agency, to Gillian's enquiries.

Dear Gillian

Thank you for your email of 27 October 2020 regarding the concerns of your constituents about the River Ems.

Response from Portsmouth Water

Response from Portsmouth Water Company's CEO


Dear Gillian

Thank you once again for your e-mail of 28th October. As I promised in my initial acknowledgement to you, here is my fuller response to the important questions you raise.