Press release

Ceremony marks the completion of flood alleviation scheme for Essex village

The flood alleviation scheme for Steeple Bumpstead is being officially opened

Ceremony to mark the completion of the Steeple Bumpsted Alleviation Scheme
Part of the new scheme

When: 1 pm, Friday 18 July 2014

Where: Church Street Bridge, Steeple Bumpstead

What: Key partners opening the scheme

Who: Charles Beardall, Area Manager Environment Agency, Brooks Newmark, MP for Braintree, Cllr David Finch, Leader of Essex County Council, Cllr Kerry Barnes, Chair of Steeple Bumpstead Parish Council

Homes, businesses and roads in the village of Steeple Bumpstead affected by flooding in recent years will be at a significantly lower flood risk from now on.

To mark the completion of the flood alleviation scheme, key partners and other invited guests will be gathering for an opening ceremony at the new vehicular bridge at the ford. The ceremony will be led by Brooks Newmark, MP for Braintree, Charles Beardall, Environment Agency Area Manager, Cllr David Finch, Leader of Essex County Council, and Cllr Kerry Barnes, Chair of Steeple Bumpstead Parish Council.

The scheme has included work to 8 bridges in the village, as well as the removal of the ford at the junction of Church Street and Water Lane, extensive channel widening and clearance works along the brooks, and landscaping the length of the channel which included 2000 replacement shrubs and trees.

Brooks Newmark, MP for Braintree said: > I’m delighted to hear that the Steeple Bumpstead Flood Alleviation Scheme has been completed which will be of huge relief to many residents – especially after the flooding in recent years. The resulting scheme is a great example of the community working together along with the Parish Council, Essex County Council, the Flood Action Group and the Environment Agency to prevent the blight on people’s lives in Steeple Bumpstead caused by the flooding. Well done to everyone involved in this project.

Charles Beardall, Environment Agency Area Manager said: > We would like to thank our contractors, consultants, engineers, staff, partners, the parish council, the Flood Action Group and lastly but by no means least the community. Working together has meant the completion of a scheme which will reduce the risk of flooding to people in Steeple Bumpstead for many years to come.

He added: > Whilst working on the final stages this scheme we have endured the wettest winter in 100 years with flows in the watercourses up to and above the design standard. We are very pleased to report that no one was flooded during this time.

Cllr David Finch, Leader of Essex County Council said: > This project is a perfect example of the County Council and the Environment Agency working together for the benefit of the community of Steeple Bumpstead.

Cllr Kerry Barnes, Chair of Steeple Bumpstead Parish Council said: > Speaking on behalf of all the residents of Steeple Bumpstead, we are absolutely delighted that the new flood scheme is now completed and can help to protect the village from the trauma of flooding. I know what an ordeal those who were flooded had to endure, with many families forced to move out of their homes for 6 months or more. I would like to thank all those involved, it has been a long process but I’m sure one well worth waiting for.

Amongst the people marking the official opening, and representing the future generations to benefit from the scheme, will be pupils of Stanley Drapkin Primary School. Mary Nicholls, Head Teacher, hopes that almost all of the school will be there to celebrate the completion of this important work.

Published 15 July 2014