Work wont begin on flood defences until summer 2017

The construction of flood defences and prevention in parts of Calderdale will not begin until the summer of 2017 the Environment Agency has said.

Repairs continue in parts of Calderdale after a 100 days since the devastating floods hit many communities and West Yorkshire experienced the wettest December since records began in 1910.

Flood relief work at River Hebden.

Flood relief work at River Hebden.

The Environment Agency has said an action plan for flood defences in Mytholmroyd is to be completed by May 2016, and an outline business case is being developed for Hebden Bridge looking at a range of options to reduce the risk of flooding in the town.

However, this is expected to be completed by early 2017 with construction starting in summer 2017.

Phil Younge, major incident recovery manager, said: The floods of December 2015 had a terrible impact on peoples’ lives, homes and businesses across the county. Many residents and businesses are not yet back in their properties.

“The job we have before us, of getting our defences back in a condition they were prior to flooding, is a huge challenge, but our teams are working tirelessly to restore protection to communities.

“We welcome the government’s recent announcement of £115 million to increase flood resilience across the Calder Valley, Leeds and York. This is in addition to £265 million we are already investing between now and 2021 to better protect 108,000 properties against flooding and coastal erosion.”

In Calderdale £35 million will be made available to investigate and progress options to reduce flooding at various sites including Mytholmroyd and Hebden Bridge.

The Environment Agency is currently working with risk management authorities, local communities and partner organisations as part of a local flood partnership to develop a shared view on priorities for the area and deliver a catchment plan to reduce flood risk for the whole Calder Valley. The plan, which is expected to be completed by October 2016, will both build on work done to date and include a review of the recent flooding.

Floods Minister Rory Stewart said: “Boxing Day’s floods hit Yorkshire hard. Homes and businesses were deluged and many people were forced from their homes but it was inspiring how volunteers, emergency services and local authorities rallied together to help those in need.

“Since that day Environment Agency teams have worked tirelessly to help communities recover, from upgrading the Foss Barrier to removing tonnes of debris and clearing collapsed buildings and bridges.

“Work on future flood protection for Yorkshire is well underway, looking at placing multi-million pound engineering solutions down-stream, alongside natural flood management measures up stream.