January 2018 Project Update

We are currently working with partners to complete our first project report. A review of our first six months (January-June 2017) has shown that we have been busy setting up the project and starting work on our three core areas of activity: better assessment, better treatment and better prevention.

Period 2 (July-December 2017) has been equally busy for the whole team. In September 2017, we hosted our first annual meeting in Hull, UK, where 40 delegates attended over the two days. The project management team led discussions on finance and reporting and the work package leads gave full updates on their activities to date. It was two days of healthy discussion and debate!

Immediately following the annual meeting, one of our advisory partners, the East and North Yorkshire Waterways Partnership, held a conference entitled ‘Catchment-Level Partnership Working at its Best’. This event was organised as the first dissemination event for the Sullied Sediments project. Members of both partnerships were brought together to exchange knowledge and ideas transnationally, share best catchment management practice and broaden their networks. It was a great way to showcase our project at a regional level.

Other notable activity includes a special meeting of our ‘Work Package 3 – Sediment Assessment colleagues, which is being held in Mechelen, Belgium, this month. The purpose of the meeting is to discuss how the first sediment sampling campaign, which was carried out in October 2017, went. Colleagues are also making plans for the second sampling round and reviewing initial findings.

Proposed River Basin Sites 25 June 2015

The Humber, Elbe and Scheldt River Catchments

Additionally, colleagues working on Work Package 5 – Citizens Behaviour are running a communications planning workshop in Manchester, UK, this month. This meeting is an opportunity for project beneficiaries and advisory partners to discuss the challenges we face with project communications in general and in particular with Work Package 5. Using the Theory of Change model, we will work through the issues and identify ways to address them effectively.

Although we have been in a period of reflection, we are also looking forward and starting to plan for our second annual meeting, which will be held in Germany in 2018. We are expecting to have lots to progress on our project objectives and outputs to report. Details of this meeting will be announced in due course.


Call for abstracts for SETAC Europe 2018


Two of our Sullied Sediments partners, Susanne Heise from the Hamburg University of Applied Sciences and Sebastian Höss from Ecossa, are chairing a session on ecotoxicological sediment and soil assessment with two additional chairs at the SETAC EU meeting in Rome next May. From today, they are inviting abstracts for their session. The deadline for submission is 29 November. For more information, please click on the link below:


Samantha Richardson: Introduction

17-06-28 Samantha Richardson in the LabHello, I am Samantha and I am working to develop a dipstick devise to test from everyday waterway pollutants. This device will be used by members of the public with guidance from scientists to help collect information regarding the pollution level across a wide area.



Test for phosphates carried out in solution using test tubes

Test for phosphates carried out in solution using test tubes

I am working to develop a quick and easy to use dip test that can be used to determine what pollutants are present in a river. These devices will test for a series of pollutants, many of which can be found on the EU’s ‘Watch list’. Using a simple colour change to identify when a chemical is present, these devices will help us gain a wider understanding of the water quality across our rivers.

Whilst out with volunteers using this technology I will also be working on a plan to help engage with people to allow them to take ownership of their waterways. The aim of this work is to help reduce the levels of pollution that enter our waterways through education and engagement of the population.

Phosphate test carried out on a paper dip test device

Phosphate test carried out on a paper dip test device


Introducing Hull’s Sullied Sediments PhD Students

At the University of Hull (UK), we have three PhD students – Wayne, Aimilia and Samantha – who are working on the Sullied Sediments project. Each of the students works within a team of people; these teams are known as work packages (WP) 3, 4 and 5. These work packages each focus on different aspects of the project.

WP3 focuses on what is in the sediment in our waterways and WP4 is looking at a way of removing Watch List pollutants from the water as it enters selected waste water treatment plants.

WP5 aims to engage with and inform the public to help them to reduce the levels of some of the pollutants entering our waterways.

The next few blogs will focus on the work Wayne, Aimilia and Samantha are doing in more detail…in their own words.

1st Sullied Sediments Annual Meeting

We’re looking forward to welcoming all our partners to the city of Hull, UK, for our 1st Annual Meeting on 25-26 September 2017. This two-day meeting will be an opportunity for all partners to be brought up-to-date on what has been happening since our Kick-off Meeting in January.

On Day 1, we will cover topics relating to project and financial management and communications. On Day 2, our Work Package Leads and PhD students will be talking about their achievements to date and what partners can expect in the year to come. We are looking forward to engaging with our advisory partners and getting their feedback. We will also be hearing about another Interreg NSRP project, Nuredrain, which has links to Sullied Sediments.

We will be reporting on how outcomes of the meeting over the coming weeks. Stay tuned!

New animated film broaches important issues 

Check out this wonderful animation called ‘The Drip – a watery tale’. It delicately yet powerfully explains the water cycle and a few other important issues:


The film was commissioned by the South Devon Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty on behalf of the South Devon Catchments Partnership (co-hosted by the Westcountry Rivers Trust) using Catchment Based Approach funding from the Environment Agency.

Aimilia Meichanetzoglou : Introduction

Hi all, I am Aimilia Meichanetzoglou and I am working with WP4 on water purification methods. My research is focused on creating a new material which will be able to clean water from unwanted chemicals. I am using pollen to create a novel purification system that will be used inside waste water treatment plants.


I am developing this new adsorbing agent using sporopollenin collected from Lycopodium Clavatum plant. These spores act like a micro particle material and are able to capture and safely remove significant amounts of unwanted chemical substances present in water, due to their nano porous surface.





This material will be used to create a device to trap the target compounds. Eventually this technology will be trialed in waste water treatment plants as a way to remove pollutants from waste water.











Left: Lycopodium Clavatum plant. Right: extracted spores using different techniques.