With English subtitles, Towy - The Dark River, or Yr Afon Dywyll - Taith yr Afon Tywi, is a startlingly beautiful film made by director Richard Rees. It follows the run of Towy from Carmarthen Bay estuary to its orgins in the Cambrian mountains, a fascinating journey for those of us who love Carmarthenshire, and top quality wildlife documentaries.
For Richard and his team at Telesgop, this has been a work based on great love of subject and commitment. filming the river in different seasons and different locations for six years. There is snow and sun; dippers, swallows and wagtails; sewin, lamprey and salmon - and badgers, red deer and otters.
“One animal which can attest to the ecological health of the river is the otter, which was a rare sight in the river 50 years ago. Thanks to carefully targeted conservation schemes, this most engaging of river creatures is flourishing on the river,” says Richard.
But his film also alerts us to threats to the Towy, caused by pollution from sheep dip and sileage effluent. Richard warns:
“In the 10 years between 2006 and 2016, a total of 490 cases of pollution were recorded on the River Tywi, silage effluent and sheep dip have been the main culprits. With two of every three UK rivers failing to reach the ecological standards and river life continually deteriorating, now is the time to safeguard our rivers before it’s too late so that wildlife and future generations can enjoy them,”
We do hope this film gets a wide airing, both for its extraordinary creative vision and its message. You can watch it here on i player:
https://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/p06phyh1/tywi-yr-afon-dywyll More stories