The little bourne chalk stream at Wickhambreaux, Kent
Credit: Jim Higham

Chalk streams

2025 target

Raise the profile and prioritise the restoration of this globally rare freshwater habitat


Current resource (Kent Habitat Survey 2012)

104.5 km


A globally rare habitat; there are only about 250 chalk streams in the world, about 160 of them are in England, with some raising from the chalk aquifer of the North Downs under Kent, inc. River Darent, Great Stour, Little Stour, Nailbourne, Dour and North and South Streams. Characterized by stable flow and temperature regimes, low energy and sediment inputs from groundwater spring sources, which has made them productive environments rich in aquatic ecology that has evolved
and specially adapted to this character. Chalk streams of Kent are impacted by ground water abstraction for drinking water supply, due to high population densities in the South East.