Phase 2 of £23 million River Mersey flood alleviation scheme nears completion
Nov 28th 2014
The Environment Agency reports on Twitter that work to reduce flood risk in Warrington is progressing well. In partnership with Warrington Borough Council, the Environment Agency is working on a £23 million flood alleviation scheme which includes building a series of walls and embankments along the River Mersey and its tributaries. The project is being delivered in three phases and when complete it will provide a 1 in 100 year standard of protection to around 2,000 homes and businesses.
Phase 1 of the River Mersey Flood Risk Management Scheme was completed in November 2013. This involved a combination of earth embankments and flood defence walls in the Latchford area of Warrington and now provides flood protection from the River Mersey to 1,500 homes. The Phase 1 flood defences were tested in December 2013, just weeks after completion, when a major tidal surge would have flooded hundreds of homes and businesses had it not been for the new defences. Work on the second phase of flood defences began in January 2014 in the Howley area of Warrington and is scheduled to be complete by the end of the month (November 2014). Phase 3 will include further areas of Warrington and the whole scheme is scheduled for completion in early 2016.
Warrington has a history of tidal and river flooding from the River Mersey and its tributaries, with records dating back to 1767. Figures from the Environment Agency reveal that the town is the tenth highest in the country for the number of properties at significant risk of flooding. The Environment Agency says that the most significant recent flood events were in October/November 2000 and in February 1990, when the River Mersey over-topped its banks and flooded a number of properties in Warrington.
£6 million of the £23 million project is coming from external contributions, with £2 million being contributed by Scottish Power in recognition of the benefits that the scheme will provide to one of its electricity distribution grids. The scheme will provide a 1 in 1,000 year standard of flood protection to a major high voltage substation in Warrington which is a critical asset for supplying electricity to the town. The scheme will also include the creation of new reed beds and other improvements to five hectares of environmental habitat.
For further information, see the North West Flooding website.