THE LEE can appear swift and clean, a beautiful stream starting in Bedfordshire and flowing through Hertfordshire and Hackney down to Bow and into the Thames.
The truth is that the river is filthy, far filthier than the Environment Agency has been willing to admit.
The watchdog that is supposed to guard our rivers’ cleanliness has had to concede that the Lee’s condition is worse than it had claimed.
Conservation-group coalition Blueprint For Water says the agency over-states the health of the Lee, as it also does that of the Itchen in Hampshire, the Kennet in Wessex and other rivers in England.
The European Commission intends to prosecute the UK for alleged polluting of waterways.
Hamish Scott 290315
* Backstory: A leisurely walk along the Lee