Flood improvement scheme proposed for Braunton

Flooding in Braunton

Posted on: 7 November 2016

A £540,000 flood improvement scheme for Braunton in North Devon will be put before Devon County Council’s Cabinet on Wednesday (9 November).

Braunton is one of the County Council’s highest priorities for reducing the risk of flooding. The most recent flood event in September highlighted the continued risk of surface water flooding in the village and councillors are being asked to approve an additional £220,000 to go towards the flood prevention work.

The main aim of the scheme will be to reduce the risk of flooding to properties in Caen Street, while also reducing disruption to through traffic heading to and from communities west of Braunton.

The proposed County Council scheme will provide an improved gravity drainage system which will remove water flow from the highway and discharge it into the River Caen. A small pumping station will also be installed to reduce the risk of standing water on the highway, and further risk of property flooding, when the river level is high.

The improvements will aim to achieve a standard of protection up to the 1 in 50 year surface water flood event and will complement the fluvial flood improvements carried out on the River Caen by the Environment Agency.

Councillor Stuart Hughes

Cllr Stuart Hughes

Councillor Stuart Hughes, Devon County Council Cabinet Member for Highway Management and Flood Prevention, said: “This is a very welcome scheme to tackle the risk of flooding in one of Devon’s high risk communities and will protect the commercial heart of the village. The most recent flood event has demonstrated that the pumping station is essential to protect the community from similar flash flooding, which it has suffered frequently. The Parish Council has agreed to adopt and maintain the pumping station following its completion which is a very positive and much appreciated local response.”

Cllr Caroline Chugg

Cllr Caroline Chugg

Councillor Caroline Chugg, County Councillor for Braunton Rural, said: “We are desperately in need of these improvements and the sooner they’re done the better. If you were to see the distress caused by the recent floods in Caen Street you may begin to understand how essential this scheme is. Last time, mainly businesses were affected, but some households as well, and if we had the river in spate and a high tide it could be devastating for many more residents – as it has been before. It has been a difficult time trying to get funding in this time of austerity and I will wait for the decision from the County Council’s Cabinet. The Environment Agency has also been very supportive, as they are all well aware of the flooding events that continue to take place.”

If approved, work on the drainage improvements is scheduled to start in January, with the pumping station following on afterwards, but the aim would be to complete the scheme by next Summer.

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