A new flood alleviation scheme at Waterside, Upton-upon-Severn, will be officially opened on Friday 13 July by Harriett Baldwin, MP for West Worcestershire with Mayor Andrea Morgan, and children from Upton Primary School.
The ceremony will take place at 6.15pm along the Waterfront and all residents are invited.
The Waterside scheme defends 64 properties in Upton with a 1 in 150 chance of flooding in any given year. The town is also protected by a separate scheme at New Street which was opened in November 2011. Waterside’s defences consist of a permanent flood wall with glass panels 450mm high along its length to maintain the view of the river. Pedestrian gates enable access to the river side of the wall. We have also included regeneration features such as raised walkways and pedestrianisation of the Waterfront area.
Upton has a long history of flooding, with over 70 floods since 1970. The Environment Agency trialled the use of temporary flood barriers along the Waterfront area in 2005. These have protected homes and businesses for six years. More recently, we have worked with the community to develop a permanent flood alleviation scheme to replace the temporary barriers.
Anthony Perry, Flood Risk Manager from the Environment Agency said: “We are delighted that the final phase of construction is now complete and will provide a more resilient flood defence system to protect homes and businesses in the town. The defences have already had their first test during April’s rain when they prevented properties in Upton from flooding and enabled the Waterfront to be used for the Folk Festival.”
Harriett Baldwin commented: “For centuries, the people and businesses of Upton have lived with the threat of repeated flooding.
“The town has flooded over 70 times in the last 40 years and has had the reputation of being the most flooded town in Britain. David Cameron visited following the floods of 2007 and promised to support permanent flood defences. The Environment Agency team has worked tirelessly on this scheme and we can all see what a tremendous job they have done.
Mayor Andrea Morgan added: “A lot of thought has gone into the design of the flood wall with its innovative glass panels, and the reclaimed brick means it blends into our town really well. During the design and construction phase opinions on the scheme were varied, but many people have recently told me this is a great asset for Upton, keeping us open for business during floods.”