News story

Community resilience measures June 2017: River Thames Scheme

We have started initial assessments for Community Resilience Measures across the River Thames Scheme area.

River Thames Scheme logo

Introduction

The River Thames between Datchet and Teddington has the largest area of undefended floodplain in England. Over 15,000 homes and businesses within the area are at risk from flooding.

The River Thames Scheme will reduce the risk of flooding to homes, businesses and critical infrastructure (roads, sewerage network, and power supplies).

We need a range of solutions to manage the risk of flooding in the River Thames Scheme area and so the scheme consists of:

  • construction of 17 kilometres of new flood channel built in 3 sections
  • capacity improvements to weirs at Sunbury, Molesey and Teddington
  • community resilience measures
  • major incident planning
  • habitat creation

Community Resilience Measures (CRM)

We are progressing initial assessments for Community Resilience Measures across the scheme area. This involves analysing data from flood modelling and surveys to look for areas that could benefit from more localised permanent, temporary or property level solutions.

Types of CRM may include permanent flood defences in the form of flood walls or embankments, temporary flood defences that can be deployed in advance of a flood or property level flood intervention consisting of flood doors and barriers.

Initial assessments

The first stage is to group properties together based on the modelling and survey data into areas that could benefit from CRM. The next stage is to identify what type of measure could be used. This is done by engineers based on the location of the properties, the physical and environmental constraints in the area, the flood modelling, past experience and by looking at the costs and benefits for each option.

Appraisal

Once we have completed initial assessments we will identify areas that can be taken forward for more detailed appraisal and consultation with communities to select a preferred solution.

CRM will not be suitable for all communities and properties. Our assessments will identify those measures that can be taken forward based on how much they cost and the benefit they provide along with engineering decisions.

Those CRMs taken forward for implementation will qualify for partial central government funding. The remaining funding is expected to be provided from partnership contributions as part of the wider River Thames Scheme.

Property level programme

You may also be aware of our Property Level Programme (PLP) which has installed flood protection measures to hundreds of properties within the Lower Thames Area. The PLP programme is now closed with works to the last few remaining properties soon to be completed.

Next Steps

Most of the data we need is collected from an office however you may see RTS representatives visiting areas to understand the location better. We will also be using local knowledge of previous flooding to better understand how we can help.

We understand you will want to know how you will be affected and we would like to talk to communities later in the year once we have reviewed the data from our initial assessments.

In the meantime we will keep you updated on the progress of our assessments and let you know how and when you can get involved via our River Thames Scheme newsletter

Published 10 August 2017