Time-lapse released of Calder Valley line flood protection work

Major work is taking place to protect Calder Valley line passengers and surrounding communities from the risk of flooding.

Thursday, 2nd December 2021, 6:00 pm

Network Rail and the Environment Agency have joined forces at Littleborough near Rochdale to build a new culvert to drain water underneath tracks when the River Roach bursts its banks.

This happened during Storm Frank on Boxing Day in 2015 leading to homes and roads being swamped. The new culvert will enable the Environment Agency to direct water away from causing damage to communities or causing travel disruption.

During a nine-day closure of the Calder Valley line last month, railway track was ripped up and the embankment excavated so a precast concrete drainage system could be lifted in by crane.

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Littleborough flood defence scheme.

Emma Gray, scheme project manager for Network Rail, said: “Flooding in the Calder Valley can cause huge disruption to people’s lives, risking not only the railway but people’s property and livelihoods.

“Working together with the Environment Agency is hugely important to make sure projects like this can protect us all from more frequent and extreme weather events. We thank passengers for their patience while the railway was closed for this essential work to be carried out.”

Ben Scott, area flood and coastal risk manager for the Environment Agency, said: “It is always immensely satisfying to see flood risk management schemes start to progress. This £56m project is incredibly important to residents of Rochdale and Littleborough who live with the very real worry of homes and business premises being flooded.

"This is a complex scheme, which has taken time to design, and strong relationships have been developed with a range of key partners.”