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This publication is available at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/managing-the-risk-of-future-flooding-in-bewdley-worcestershire/how-the-environment-agency-is-managing-the-risk-of-flooding-in-the-future-at-beales-cornerwribbenhall-bewdley-worcs
1. What’s happening?
Beales Corner in Bewdley, Worcestershire has a long history of flooding. Since 2007, temporary flood defence barriers have been trialled to reduce the risk of flooding.
In September 2014, the Environment Agency completed a technical review, focussing on a number of criteria, of the temporary defences which highlighted that providing property level protection was the most suitable long-term option solution for managing the risk of flooding in this location in the long-term. This method is able to provide a higher standard of protection to more properties while also considering the best use of public funds.
More details on the criteria, the review and findings can be found on Bewdley Town Council’s website
2. Property level protection
Property level protection is where a range of flood resistance and resilience measures are used on individual properties to reduce the risk of flooding. The most common product types used are flood gates, removable doors and air-brick barriers, designed to fit across openings to prevent water entering the property during a flood.
We prioritise products that can be built in where appropriate and cost effective. These include automatic door guards, flood proof doors, resilient windows and frames and self-closing air-bricks. An accredited survey is required to identify the most appropriate measures for each property.
Property level protection in Bewdley is able to provide reduced flood risk for 44 properties, as opposed to only 19 properties being provided with limited benefit from the temporary barriers.
3. Timeline of next steps
|When||What will be happening|
|July 2016 to January 2017||First phase of installation of property level protection into non-listed properties by our contractor, Watertight|
|November 2017 to February 2018||Second phase of installation of property level protection measures into listed properties by our contractor, Watertight|
|March 2018||Receive surveyors’ formal approval for completed property level protection measures|
|March 2020||Through a partnership approach with Bewdley Town Council and local community volunteers, deployment of the temporary barrier will continue in the short term as necessary and until a provisional date of March 2020. The approach will be reviewed periodically|
4. Bewdley’s temporary barriers
During their 9 year trial period, and as of July 2016 the temporary barriers at Beales Corner have been used 12 times and have protected properties on 3 of those occasions. The temporary flood defence barriers have provided limited flood protection to 19 properties. When river levels are higher, the water will exceed the barriers and flood properties. Other risks of the temporary defences include the barriers not being put up in enough time; the barriers failing and/or leaking.
5. History of flooding in Bewdley
Bewdley sits on the River Severn and has experienced a number of major floods in 1947, 1965, 1998, 2000, 2002, 2004, 2008 and most recently in 2014. The highest river level was recorded in 1947 as 5.82 metres at the Bewdley gauge. February 2014 saw the highest river levels since the barrier trial began. Flooding is also caused from groundwater and surface water flooding.
6. Working with the local community
The Environment Agency has been working with local residents since 2011 through drop-in sessions and surveys. Feedback from the community was used in the technical review of the temporary barriers.
Since 2015 the Environment Agency have been working with Bewdley Town Council, the Wribbenhall Flood group and community volunteers to develop a partnership approach to allow the temporary barriers to continue in the short term until March 2020. The Town Council are leading on producing a community plan addressing the 3 key elements that need to be addressed: risk mitigation, joint communications and reduction of costs in deploying the barrier,
The partnership is holding periodic meetings and the Environment Agency will review the progress of the plan to ensure all elements are being addressed.
If you would like to offer your help please contact Bewdley Town Council via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Tel: 01299 400157
7. Find out more
If you have any questions or comments regarding the PLP scheme proposed for Bewdley or the trial of the temporary flood barriers at Beales Corner please contact Dan Wilkinson via email at email@example.com.