The Environment Agency has announced an action plan for Mytholmroyd, which will spend more than £10 million on flood defences to better protect homes and businesses.
A new flood action plan for the town, commissioned by Environment Secretary Elizabeth Truss, sets out a programme to reduce flood risk to the town, with construction due to start by the end of the year.
The outline plan includes proposals to:
- Raise walls and construct new ones to maximum height of approximately 1.8m
- Widen the channel on the River Calder including improvements to bridge structures
- Strengthen buildings on both banks of the River Calder and Cragg Brook
- Make improvements to the culvert on While Lee Clough
Measures to soften the visual impact of walls will include the use of glass panels, raised footpaths and landscaping. The local community will now be consulted on the options to ensure the right decisions are made.
In conjunction with developing options to reduce the risk of flooding from the Calder and its tributaries, the Environment Agency is also working with partners to develop an understanding of surface water flood risk, and the links with flooding from the highways, sewers and the Rochdale Canal.
On Boxing Day 2015, around 370 properties were flooded in Mytholmroyd as extreme levels of rainfall affected the Upper Calder Valley. Since then, Environment Agency teams have carried out thousands of inspections, made crucial repairs and constructed temporary defences. The action plan will enable the local community to have a vital say in the permanent flood risk measures for the town.
Environment Secretary Elizabeth Truss said:
“I saw first-hand the devastation caused in Mytholmroyd by the floods – it was heart breaking to see, but also inspiring to witness the community rally round, especially as someone who grew up in Yorkshire.
I am determined the people of Mytholmroyd have the best possible protection against future flooding and this plan is a key step to making that happen and delivering on our £10 million pledge.
The local geography is challenging and there are no simple answers – but we will not shy away from the task in hand. That is why the Environment Agency has developed a plan that will have the biggest impact on saving people’s homes, businesses, and ultimately lives, from future flooding.”