Thursday 13 June 2024
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Southwell: Plans for 250m flood defence barrier in the town

Proposed flood defences would make people feel safer, a councillor said.

Southwell would be protected by a 250m earth barrier to protect water from flooding properties during heavy rain.

The town has been hit by flash floods several times, including 14 homes being flooded during Storm Babet in October 2023.

Public consultation has just begun on the defences, with plans being submitted by Nottinghamshire County Council in partnership with Via East Midlands.

A raised barrier of earth up to 2.5 metres high would be built on land to the south of Southwell Minster, catching run-off from Potwell Dyke.

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This would protect homes on nearby Church Street, which has been flooded several times.

A weir will be put in place to release any water collected slowly and control water levels.

A separate application, due to be submitted this summer, is looking at constructing a holding reservoir on the same area of land, according to planning documents.

Councillor Peter Harris (Lib Dem), who represents Southwell on Newark & Sherwood District Council, said: “The town was badly flooded in 2006 and 2013 and then again in Storm Babet. It’s a long-standing problem.

“Hopefully people will feel safer once the flood protection is in place, particularly those who were badly affected in 2013.

“It’s a shame it’s taken such a long time. It’s been a challenge for the council to understand the geology of the town.

“The community acted quickly after the flooding to call for this.”

He said that some people in the town had questions about how the defences would operate during heavy rain and were keen to find out more during the consultation.

Southwell suffered more than £9m of damage when at least 200 homes and businesses were flooded in 2013, with some residents unable to return for more than a year.

The town sits in a valley, which makes several areas of the town prone to flooding.

The plans have been through several rounds of changes since they were first drawn up in 2021.

Comments on the plans can be made through Nottinghamshire County Council’s planning website until June 22, and a decision will be made at a later date.

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