Funds flood in to boost town defences

Plans to improve a drainage area in Emsworth to stop scenes like this happening again are gathering pace.

The Environment Agency is currently carrying out work to determine the best plan of action to deal with a bottleneck at a culvert in Bridge Road as well as a flooding ditch behind homes in Selangor Avenue.

Two years ago the two areas were overwhelmed by a heavy downpour described as a one-in-50-years storm. It flooded dozens of homes and wrote off dozens of cars.

The works have been put on a priority shortlist for 2012/13 financial year, and have already been earmarked for at least £200,000 worth of funding.

The remainder needed will be forthcoming if the EA can show its plan to be cost effective in terms of the number of homes that would be protected.

Technical specialist in the flood risk management team Ian Miller said there is £200,000 of funding for the financial year of 2012/13, and potentially another £100,000 for the year after.

“What we are trying to do is put in storage above Bridge Road that will collect any storm water, hold it for the duration of the storm and be slowly let out to reduce the risk of it flooding,” he said.

“The overriding issue is the cost benefit; we need to demonstrate we can achieve the standard of protection.”