More than 500 homes and businesses in Cumbria will be better protected from flooding thanks to a new £9.5 million scheme completed by the Environment Agency.
The Town Beck Flood Alleviation Scheme in Ulverston, Cumbria, will reduce flood risk to more than 400 homes and more than 100 businesses, as well as critical tourism infrastructure. A maze of underground water channels (culverts) under the houses, roads and carparks in the town centre have been repaired and/or replaced using innovative techniques and flood defences have been constructed.
Emma Howard Boyd, Chair of the Environment Agency, officially opened the scheme, and said:
Cumbrian communities know well the devastation that flooding can cause. The Town Beck flood defence will better protect 500 homes and businesses in Ulverston and support England’s tourist economy by improving protection for the railway that leads to the Lake District.
To achieve this, the Environment Agency has worked closely with local residents, Network Rail, United Utilities and the Council. It’s a brilliant example of how partnership working benefits people, the national economy and the natural environment.
Town Beck lies within a steep catchment and predominantly runs underground through the town centre. The new scheme consists of a number of sections throughout the town centre including raising existing flood defence walls, installing new floodgates, repairing and refurbishing the underground water channels (culverts), and building a swale in the natural flood plain to ensure that there is no increase to flood risk in South Ulverston. A new wildflower meadow has also been created as part of the scheme, boosting biodiversity and improving the local environment.