British Hydrological Society (BHS)
1983 - present
An Initial Planning Group to assess the feasibility of setting up a British Hydrological Society was set up in 1982 at the close of the IAHS Scientific Assembly in Exeter. The aim of this Group was to found an organisation which would be truly inter-disciplinary in its outlook and activities, to develop a broad and lively interest in the very many facets of water and the water cycle, both the natural cycle and that modified by man. The Institution of Engineers, through its Hydrology Group, and the NERC Institute of Hydrology both agreed to sponsor the Society by providing administrative support. An Inaugural Meeting of the new Society was held at the Royal Society on 1st November 1983, with 143 members present, nearly half of the membership at that time. Links with the Royal Society were to be maintained through the Hydrological Sub-Committee concerned with furthering the aims of the International Association of Hydrological Sciences (IAHS) (claimed to be the oldest and foremost of the international, non-governmental organisations dealing with hydrology and water resources), a component body of the International Union of Geodesy and Geophysics.
BHS continued with the practice of the ICE Hydrology Group in organising discussion meetings on specific topics presented by 2-3 invited speakers but holding them at various locations round the country. The first residential British Hydrological Society National Hydrology Symposium was held at the University of Hull in 1987; similar events have been held every other year since then. A Newsletter mailed to individual members was launched in 1984.
The Society is managed on behalf of its members by an elected committee. The Society supports a number of Regional Sections around the UK: the Pennines Hydrological Group, the Scottish Hydrological Group, the South East Section and the South West Section which organise additional meetings and field visits.
The Society offers a number of Awards and Prizes, including Honorary Membership, the President's Prize, the Penman Lecture Award, the Society Prize for the best presentation at the annual National Hydrology Meeting and the Young Person's Prize, for the best presentation at the annual Peter Wolf postgraduate symposium.
Celia Kirby (Technical Secretary for BHS), 2016