Time has come for multi-million pound flood defences says council chief

Cllr Richard Scott meets government minister Brandon Lewis and Bucks Fire and Rescue's Chief Operating Officer Jason Thelwell yesterday

Cllr Richard Scott meets government minister Brandon Lewis and Bucks Fire and Rescue's Chief Operating Officer Jason Thelwell yesterday

First published in News
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Bucks Free Press: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter

THE LEADER of Wycombe District Council believes now is the time to push forward with the multi-million pound plans to help avoid flooding in Marlow and the surrounding area.

Cllr Richard Scott, who was in Marlow to meet government minister Brandon Laws yesterday morning, said the recent flooding is proof that something needs to be done quickly to avoid future disasters.

A £6.3million flood alleviation scheme from the Environment Agency was approved by WDC in 2010, but funding for the ambitious project has proved more difficult.

But Cllr Scott, who praised the work of firefighters in Marlow, insists the scheme only needs £1.25million extra to go ahead and now hopes the government can stump up the remaining cash.

He said: “It’s the worst I’ve seen it in 40 years. We’ve got around 50 properties affected across the district and the firefighters are doing a remarkable job, they’re fantastic.

“In the short term we’re doing everything we can we’re getting extra sandbags in but in the longer term we want to get this scheme that’s been proposed in place.

“There’s planning permission for it and it’s all agreed but mow we just need to get funding for it. It needs an extra £1.25million to get the funding in place and I’ll leave that thought with the minister.

“We’re not the only place in the country with problem, but this scheme has been proposed for six years. This has reinvigorated that plan. It should be done, and this is an example of what can happen if you don’t do it.”

WDC is currently sourcing extra sandbags, which Cllr Scott said will be given to the residents most in need.

The council intends to part fund the scheme, and Cllr Scott is currently in discussion with Bucks County Council, who would also contribute.

BCC leader Martin Tett also met with Mr Lewis along with cabinet members at County Hall in Aylesbury.

They discussed how authorities can work to improve relationships, particularly with the Environment Agency.

Cabinet members also lobbied the minister over the need for major government investment in restoring Britain's roads after three exceptionally severe winters.

Cllr Tett said: “'It was great to see Brandon in Buckinghamshire. He's an impressive Minister, clearly with a good grasp of the key issues, and willing to engage with the County Council in improving life for our residents.”

The Marlow plans include constructing flood walls, bunds, and groundwater pumping wells at Pound Lane, Lower Pound Lane, Gossmore Lane and Firview Close.

Brandon Lewis, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Department for Communities and Local Government, was in Marlow yesterday to assess the flood damage and meet fire crews.

The Conservative MP, whose ministerial duties include the fire service, said he will talk to representatives at the Department for Rural Affairs and Agriculture about funding for the project.

He told the BFP: “As a team we’ll have to have a look at it. I will feed that through to the Environment Agency and DEFRA.

“It’s not my department, but I will speak to them. I know the county are quite keen to see that delivered upon, but I haven’t seen the scheme in detail yet to see how it fits in.

“At the moment, the key thing is to try and make sure the team have got the space and what they need to protect the properties here. “

Last year, The Environment Agency confirmed the project was on hold as Marlow was deemed a “low priority” compared to other stretches of the Thames and therefore did not qualify for specific government funding.

Comments (11)

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10:13am Tue 11 Feb 14

townraider says...

"The council intends to part fund the scheme, and Cllr Scott is currently in discussion with Bucks County Council, who would also contribute".-- Scott that better not be WDC money -- you have asset stripped High Wycombe and wont spend a penny in High Wycombe but constantly favour Marlow.
"The council intends to part fund the scheme, and Cllr Scott is currently in discussion with Bucks County Council, who would also contribute".-- Scott that better not be WDC money -- you have asset stripped High Wycombe and wont spend a penny in High Wycombe but constantly favour Marlow. townraider
  • Score: -8

11:29am Tue 11 Feb 14

Phredd says...

If the government were to divert the £52Billion earmarked for HS2 into upgrading the existing infrastructure/flood relief/coastal defences it would safeguard the country for another century plus.

That would be a much better vanity project than a train line for a few millionaires.
If the government were to divert the £52Billion earmarked for HS2 into upgrading the existing infrastructure/flood relief/coastal defences it would safeguard the country for another century plus. That would be a much better vanity project than a train line for a few millionaires. Phredd
  • Score: 17

1:59pm Tue 11 Feb 14

delb88 says...

Horse - Stable - Door !
Horse - Stable - Door ! delb88
  • Score: 9

3:13pm Tue 11 Feb 14

Darren Hayday says...

Phredd wrote:
If the government were to divert the £52Billion earmarked for HS2 into upgrading the existing infrastructure/flood relief/coastal defences it would safeguard the country for another century plus.

That would be a much better vanity project than a train line for a few millionaires.
You made a very valid point! - If the money wasn’t wasted on, then we wouldn’t have so many pot-holes in our roads and there would be so much more needed projects rather than taking off a few minutes travel time from train journeys.. The UK Government = gross incompetence and nothing ever seems to change. We the people get screwed over, every time! (and we are the ones paying for it all!) - you couldn’t make it up..!
[quote][p][bold]Phredd[/bold] wrote: If the government were to divert the £52Billion earmarked for HS2 into upgrading the existing infrastructure/flood relief/coastal defences it would safeguard the country for another century plus. That would be a much better vanity project than a train line for a few millionaires.[/p][/quote]You made a very valid point! - If the money wasn’t wasted on, then we wouldn’t have so many pot-holes in our roads and there would be so much more needed projects rather than taking off a few minutes travel time from train journeys.. The UK Government = gross incompetence and nothing ever seems to change. We the people get screwed over, every time! (and we are the ones paying for it all!) - you couldn’t make it up..! Darren Hayday
  • Score: 2

4:43pm Tue 11 Feb 14

legiopatrianostra says...

townraider wrote:
"The council intends to part fund the scheme, and Cllr Scott is currently in discussion with Bucks County Council, who would also contribute".-- Scott that better not be WDC money -- you have asset stripped High Wycombe and wont spend a penny in High Wycombe but constantly favour Marlow.
For Pete's sake you nasty little man. A considerable proportion of Marlow flooded, people have had to move out of their homes and through no fault of their own. The decent and proper thing to do, is that the Council and people assist where they can.
[quote][p][bold]townraider[/bold] wrote: "The council intends to part fund the scheme, and Cllr Scott is currently in discussion with Bucks County Council, who would also contribute".-- Scott that better not be WDC money -- you have asset stripped High Wycombe and wont spend a penny in High Wycombe but constantly favour Marlow.[/p][/quote]For Pete's sake you nasty little man. A considerable proportion of Marlow flooded, people have had to move out of their homes and through no fault of their own. The decent and proper thing to do, is that the Council and people assist where they can. legiopatrianostra
  • Score: 12

9:11pm Tue 11 Feb 14

DonRockell says...

Unless they have found a way of draining the Thames - no amount of Flood relief, building barriers or pumping will work- This water is NOT flood it is rising GROUND WATER - the water is at the level of current water table and its not run off water that can soak away anywhere its rising water flowing from the hills around and much further up the Valley even out past Oxford and Letchlade.

Maybe that why Datchet is getting so much flooding now they've dug that nice big drainage ditch all the way from Maidenhead to Stains - Dug through all that Gravel that the water could slowly pass through in its normal way but now flows like a new river sending all that water that could be held back on the old flood plains (which we want to build on) quickly down river. (I wounder who pocketed the money from all the Gravel when it got carted away?)

If you want to buy a house in the flood plain without doing a good bit of research them I' sorry but you will get flooded out at some time. Pound Lane was built in 1962/3 on what was Marsh and Flood Plain and St Peters St (the old High St) has a very long history of Flooding along its whole length and they wounder why it gets flooded out and then they want compensation from the rest of us.

The only real thing the council can do is to provide temporary accommodation for the afflicted but to stop this sort of flood is with our current level of technology will cost billions - not a few million here and there and no amount of pumping will do anything but shift water from one place to another without making any real difference.

The 1947 & 49 floods washed about 6ft (2m) off the All Saints church grave yard - the river flowed up the park across the causeway and then down St Peter St - This Flood is no where near that sort of level and we normally get this sort of flood every decade or so - the last ones being 2003 and 2007 - So unless you want to rebuild the houses in the Flood plain on Stilts - raise the roads and path levels - take out the wear and widen the Bridge so that the water has no restriction - flood relief in Marlow will not work.
Unless they have found a way of draining the Thames - no amount of Flood relief, building barriers or pumping will work- This water is NOT flood it is rising GROUND WATER - the water is at the level of current water table and its not run off water that can soak away anywhere its rising water flowing from the hills around and much further up the Valley even out past Oxford and Letchlade. Maybe that why Datchet is getting so much flooding now they've dug that nice big drainage ditch all the way from Maidenhead to Stains - Dug through all that Gravel that the water could slowly pass through in its normal way but now flows like a new river sending all that water that could be held back on the old flood plains (which we want to build on) quickly down river. (I wounder who pocketed the money from all the Gravel when it got carted away?) If you want to buy a house in the flood plain without doing a good bit of research them I' sorry but you will get flooded out at some time. Pound Lane was built in 1962/3 on what was Marsh and Flood Plain and St Peters St (the old High St) has a very long history of Flooding along its whole length and they wounder why it gets flooded out and then they want compensation from the rest of us. The only real thing the council can do is to provide temporary accommodation for the afflicted but to stop this sort of flood is with our current level of technology will cost billions - not a few million here and there and no amount of pumping will do anything but shift water from one place to another without making any real difference. The 1947 & 49 floods washed about 6ft (2m) off the All Saints church grave yard - the river flowed up the park across the causeway and then down St Peter St - This Flood is no where near that sort of level and we normally get this sort of flood every decade or so - the last ones being 2003 and 2007 - So unless you want to rebuild the houses in the Flood plain on Stilts - raise the roads and path levels - take out the wear and widen the Bridge so that the water has no restriction - flood relief in Marlow will not work. DonRockell
  • Score: 7

11:31pm Tue 11 Feb 14

townraider says...

DonRockell wrote:
Unless they have found a way of draining the Thames - no amount of Flood relief, building barriers or pumping will work- This water is NOT flood it is rising GROUND WATER - the water is at the level of current water table and its not run off water that can soak away anywhere its rising water flowing from the hills around and much further up the Valley even out past Oxford and Letchlade.

Maybe that why Datchet is getting so much flooding now they've dug that nice big drainage ditch all the way from Maidenhead to Stains - Dug through all that Gravel that the water could slowly pass through in its normal way but now flows like a new river sending all that water that could be held back on the old flood plains (which we want to build on) quickly down river. (I wounder who pocketed the money from all the Gravel when it got carted away?)

If you want to buy a house in the flood plain without doing a good bit of research them I' sorry but you will get flooded out at some time. Pound Lane was built in 1962/3 on what was Marsh and Flood Plain and St Peters St (the old High St) has a very long history of Flooding along its whole length and they wounder why it gets flooded out and then they want compensation from the rest of us.

The only real thing the council can do is to provide temporary accommodation for the afflicted but to stop this sort of flood is with our current level of technology will cost billions - not a few million here and there and no amount of pumping will do anything but shift water from one place to another without making any real difference.

The 1947 & 49 floods washed about 6ft (2m) off the All Saints church grave yard - the river flowed up the park across the causeway and then down St Peter St - This Flood is no where near that sort of level and we normally get this sort of flood every decade or so - the last ones being 2003 and 2007 - So unless you want to rebuild the houses in the Flood plain on Stilts - raise the roads and path levels - take out the wear and widen the Bridge so that the water has no restriction - flood relief in Marlow will not work.
Its been suggested if we dug out the lakes we now have in marlow and created marinas with house boats ..would that address the housing shortage
[quote][p][bold]DonRockell[/bold] wrote: Unless they have found a way of draining the Thames - no amount of Flood relief, building barriers or pumping will work- This water is NOT flood it is rising GROUND WATER - the water is at the level of current water table and its not run off water that can soak away anywhere its rising water flowing from the hills around and much further up the Valley even out past Oxford and Letchlade. Maybe that why Datchet is getting so much flooding now they've dug that nice big drainage ditch all the way from Maidenhead to Stains - Dug through all that Gravel that the water could slowly pass through in its normal way but now flows like a new river sending all that water that could be held back on the old flood plains (which we want to build on) quickly down river. (I wounder who pocketed the money from all the Gravel when it got carted away?) If you want to buy a house in the flood plain without doing a good bit of research them I' sorry but you will get flooded out at some time. Pound Lane was built in 1962/3 on what was Marsh and Flood Plain and St Peters St (the old High St) has a very long history of Flooding along its whole length and they wounder why it gets flooded out and then they want compensation from the rest of us. The only real thing the council can do is to provide temporary accommodation for the afflicted but to stop this sort of flood is with our current level of technology will cost billions - not a few million here and there and no amount of pumping will do anything but shift water from one place to another without making any real difference. The 1947 & 49 floods washed about 6ft (2m) off the All Saints church grave yard - the river flowed up the park across the causeway and then down St Peter St - This Flood is no where near that sort of level and we normally get this sort of flood every decade or so - the last ones being 2003 and 2007 - So unless you want to rebuild the houses in the Flood plain on Stilts - raise the roads and path levels - take out the wear and widen the Bridge so that the water has no restriction - flood relief in Marlow will not work.[/p][/quote]Its been suggested if we dug out the lakes we now have in marlow and created marinas with house boats ..would that address the housing shortage townraider
  • Score: -5

11:34pm Tue 11 Feb 14

Undercover Euro Yob says...

DonRockell wrote:
Unless they have found a way of draining the Thames - no amount of Flood relief, building barriers or pumping will work- This water is NOT flood it is rising GROUND WATER - the water is at the level of current water table and its not run off water that can soak away anywhere its rising water flowing from the hills around and much further up the Valley even out past Oxford and Letchlade.

Maybe that why Datchet is getting so much flooding now they've dug that nice big drainage ditch all the way from Maidenhead to Stains - Dug through all that Gravel that the water could slowly pass through in its normal way but now flows like a new river sending all that water that could be held back on the old flood plains (which we want to build on) quickly down river. (I wounder who pocketed the money from all the Gravel when it got carted away?)

If you want to buy a house in the flood plain without doing a good bit of research them I' sorry but you will get flooded out at some time. Pound Lane was built in 1962/3 on what was Marsh and Flood Plain and St Peters St (the old High St) has a very long history of Flooding along its whole length and they wounder why it gets flooded out and then they want compensation from the rest of us.

The only real thing the council can do is to provide temporary accommodation for the afflicted but to stop this sort of flood is with our current level of technology will cost billions - not a few million here and there and no amount of pumping will do anything but shift water from one place to another without making any real difference.

The 1947 & 49 floods washed about 6ft (2m) off the All Saints church grave yard - the river flowed up the park across the causeway and then down St Peter St - This Flood is no where near that sort of level and we normally get this sort of flood every decade or so - the last ones being 2003 and 2007 - So unless you want to rebuild the houses in the Flood plain on Stilts - raise the roads and path levels - take out the wear and widen the Bridge so that the water has no restriction - flood relief in Marlow will not work.
Quite a few years ago the parish allotments at Wooburn were partly surrounded by the river at Holtspur Lane and sometimes they were flooded. The Council (I suppose) pushed earth from the allotments to make a ‘dyke’ against the river but - as they were lowering the level of the land to below the water table - the ‘dyke’ became a causeway between the river and the allotments that the lake had become. The dyke/causeway had gone when I looked the other day and I remember the flooding problem was solved whenever there was a dry summer.

I may be mis-remembering this but years ago I read in a BBC publication called 'On the Rocks' that water levels would rise by, I think, 300 feet if the polar ice caps melted - I worked out with the assistance of an OS map that this would mean my house at Wooburn would have a lake in the front garden and that people in Flackwell Heath would feel superior but have to defend their houses against refugees from places like Cookham and Maidenhead in the battle for survival.

We do seem to be melting the ice caps and the sea level does seem to be rising.
[quote][p][bold]DonRockell[/bold] wrote: Unless they have found a way of draining the Thames - no amount of Flood relief, building barriers or pumping will work- This water is NOT flood it is rising GROUND WATER - the water is at the level of current water table and its not run off water that can soak away anywhere its rising water flowing from the hills around and much further up the Valley even out past Oxford and Letchlade. Maybe that why Datchet is getting so much flooding now they've dug that nice big drainage ditch all the way from Maidenhead to Stains - Dug through all that Gravel that the water could slowly pass through in its normal way but now flows like a new river sending all that water that could be held back on the old flood plains (which we want to build on) quickly down river. (I wounder who pocketed the money from all the Gravel when it got carted away?) If you want to buy a house in the flood plain without doing a good bit of research them I' sorry but you will get flooded out at some time. Pound Lane was built in 1962/3 on what was Marsh and Flood Plain and St Peters St (the old High St) has a very long history of Flooding along its whole length and they wounder why it gets flooded out and then they want compensation from the rest of us. The only real thing the council can do is to provide temporary accommodation for the afflicted but to stop this sort of flood is with our current level of technology will cost billions - not a few million here and there and no amount of pumping will do anything but shift water from one place to another without making any real difference. The 1947 & 49 floods washed about 6ft (2m) off the All Saints church grave yard - the river flowed up the park across the causeway and then down St Peter St - This Flood is no where near that sort of level and we normally get this sort of flood every decade or so - the last ones being 2003 and 2007 - So unless you want to rebuild the houses in the Flood plain on Stilts - raise the roads and path levels - take out the wear and widen the Bridge so that the water has no restriction - flood relief in Marlow will not work.[/p][/quote]Quite a few years ago the parish allotments at Wooburn were partly surrounded by the river at Holtspur Lane and sometimes they were flooded. The Council (I suppose) pushed earth from the allotments to make a ‘dyke’ against the river but - as they were lowering the level of the land to below the water table - the ‘dyke’ became a causeway between the river and the allotments that the lake had become. The dyke/causeway had gone when I looked the other day and I remember the flooding problem was solved whenever there was a dry summer. I may be mis-remembering this but years ago I read in a BBC publication called 'On the Rocks' that water levels would rise by, I think, 300 feet if the polar ice caps melted - I worked out with the assistance of an OS map that this would mean my house at Wooburn would have a lake in the front garden and that people in Flackwell Heath would feel superior but have to defend their houses against refugees from places like Cookham and Maidenhead in the battle for survival. We do seem to be melting the ice caps and the sea level does seem to be rising. Undercover Euro Yob
  • Score: -6

11:48pm Tue 11 Feb 14

Undercover Euro Yob says...

Also:

http://en.wikipedia.
org/wiki/Capital_of_
England

Since the Victorian era the Thames has been extensively embanked, and many of its London tributaries now flow underground. The Thames is a tidal river, and London is vulnerable to flooding. The threat has increased over time because of a slow but continuous rise in high water level by the slow 'tilting' of Britain (up in the north and down in the south) caused by post-glacial rebound.
Also: http://en.wikipedia. org/wiki/Capital_of_ England Since the Victorian era the Thames has been extensively embanked, and many of its London tributaries now flow underground. The Thames is a tidal river, and London is vulnerable to flooding.[108] The threat has increased over time because of a slow but continuous rise in high water level by the slow 'tilting' of Britain (up in the north and down in the south) caused by post-glacial rebound.[109] Undercover Euro Yob
  • Score: -4

1:29pm Wed 12 Feb 14

Welwyn Dowd says...

You would expect the leader of WDC to be in favour of the scheme - his house is next to the Thames in Marlow. A conflict of interest as they say.
You would expect the leader of WDC to be in favour of the scheme - his house is next to the Thames in Marlow. A conflict of interest as they say. Welwyn Dowd
  • Score: -9

6:22pm Thu 13 Feb 14

Dickitdo says...

Welwyn Dowd wrote:
You would expect the leader of WDC to be in favour of the scheme - his house is next to the Thames in Marlow. A conflict of interest as they say.
Whats good for the Goose is good for the Gander ! .Why would he not be in favour of flood defenses , It is needed for many people and their properties . Not just the leader of W. D. C .And he would realise this, are you saying because he lives by the river that flood defenses should not be built ! ?.
[quote][p][bold]Welwyn Dowd[/bold] wrote: You would expect the leader of WDC to be in favour of the scheme - his house is next to the Thames in Marlow. A conflict of interest as they say.[/p][/quote]Whats good for the Goose is good for the Gander ! .Why would he not be in favour of flood defenses , It is needed for many people and their properties . Not just the leader of W. D. C .And he would realise this, are you saying because he lives by the river that flood defenses should not be built ! ?. Dickitdo
  • Score: 9

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