[T]he heavy rain fall over the weekend, causing increased water levels has been responded to by Environment Agency staff, and has had an impact on the recovery work being undertaken.
When river levels are high or fast flowing it is not only the health and safety of those working on projects within the water restricts the work which can restrict activity, but also make it impossible to remove silt and gravel, as the flow empties causes the contents are washed out before they can be lifted out.
Environment Agency staff have been out on location to assess the situation and the following work is due to take place this week:
At Little Caldew, Carlisle between Denton Holm and Calder Maltings, removal of debris and silt is due to take place once the river level has dropped.
Work to strengthen Botcherby Bridge is ahead of schedule, with work on the upstream side has been completed and the scaffolding is being removed, and work has started on the downstream side. Concrete has been strayed onto the mesh cage which has been drilled into the bridge to provide extra strength to the stonework of the structure. The whole project is expected to be completed ahead of schedule (mid-September). This allows gravel removal to take place earlier under the bridge.
Due to the heavy rain fall over the weekend, the water levels in the lakes which feed the River Derwent the final 2 days of gravel removal work in the river at Gote Bridge have not been able to be completed. The fast, high level flow prevents work taking place in the river. We need to wait for the river levels to fall, which is slowed down by the high lake levels upstream
At Townsfield work to remove a further 4000 tonnes of gravel from the river was completed last Friday, with work ongoing to remove the gravel from the stockpile in the field this week. This section of the river will be reviewed again once the water level has dropped, following this weekend’s rainfall. The current tidying up of the site is due to be completed within 2 weeks. Gravel removal from this point is necessary due to the increased amounts being deposited on the river bed here due to the landslips and bank erosion higher up the catchment.
Gravel removal work and defence repairs, expected to take 3 months is due to start at The Puddle this week. The major construction work will require the road to be closed to traffic and pedestrians during this time, including weekends. This project can be viewed via the community stop-frame camera footage which is available from the parish council’s website: http://www.vision-link.co.uk/braithwaite.php
Ongoing design work to repair and replace part of the culvert upstream of the A591.
Repair work to the river embankment walls near the bridge at Holme Street continue. The project is expected to take a total of 2 months.
Continue repair work to the wall and embankment and river clearance at Crooks Beck.
Due to the extreme rainfall over the weekend, Environment Agency staff have been onsite to assess the impact on the water course and project site. Scaffolding for the building of the defence wall has been damaged and will be replaced.
Due to the weekend weather, the high fast flowing river has washed out the temporary flume 200 meters upstream of Abbey Road/Station Road bridge, where work was taking place to create a track along the riverbed. This is to create access for wall repair work up and down stream of the bridge on the left bank.
Working methods are being reassessed and work is due to recommence shortly.
Planning for further gravel removal in the River Kent is taking place this week.
River levels permitting, work will continue to repair river walls at several locations in Kendal.
Work will continue to de-silt and inspect the culvert sections of Stock Beck.
Once river levels have gone down, work will begin on the blockstone repair works to the embankment of the River Ehen.
Work is designed to strengthen the embankment and reseal the flood defence wall at Barepot.
Also this week:
Environmental Permitting Regulations:
Work will be able to start on several projects as the Environment Agency has issued 9 bespoke permits last week for a variety of flood risk activities. This brings the total bespoke environmental permits issued to 120 since the regulations came into force 6 April 2016. An environmental permit for flood risk activities is needed if you want to do certain work:
- in, under, over or near a main river (including where the river is in a culvert)
- on or near a flood defence on a main river
- in the flood plain of a main river
- on or near a sea defence
You’re breaking the law if you carry out these activities without a permit if you should have one. More information is available via https://www.gov.uk/guidance/flood-risk-activities-environmental-permits
The Environment Agency have held a training session for contractors on applications for permits to ensure a turnaround with 10 days. The sessions cover the paperwork needed and common mistakes which may slow down the process. Feedback from the session has been good.
Fortnightly catch up meetings have been set up with Cumbria County Council and the Environment Agency to discuss progress and to flag up any issues which may delay the delivery of the bridge repairs.
Advice has been given to CCC regarding the replacement of Gowan Old Bridge, Staveley. We are also working closely with United Utilities to find a solution to the repairs which are required to the outfall.
This is the weekly update of activities taking place in the next 7 days.
You can read or download the full Cumbria Floods Partnership Action Plan and Summary report from https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/cumbria-flood-action-plan
For signing up to flood warnings, and latest flood information visit www.gov.uk/flood or ring Floodline 0345 988 1188.