Saturday, 22 February 2020

Residents unhappy at flood plans

CAMPAIGNERS are questioning the Environment Agency’s plans for a flood alleviation scheme in Caversham.

The Campaign for A Better Flood Alleviation Scheme, which is made up of residents, business and community groups, says the consultation exercise is inadequate and wants the agency to “engage with the serious concerns about the impact of the scheme”.

During its initial consultation about the proposals in July, 55 per cent of respondents said they did not want the agency to pursue any of the three scheme options but it is now developing the biggest of these.

Campaign spokeswoman Anke Ueberberg said: “Since the consultation the agency has added a 25m-wide channel that would cut through the ‘Sandy Park’ playground on Christchurch Meadows, under George Street and through the car park on Hills Meadow. This would fundamentally and irreversibly alter the green space of Christchurch Meadows.

“The campaign is asking for clear evidence that the proposals are a necessary, proportionate and appropriate solution to the known and expected problems of flooding in this area.”

Spencer Rodd, a member of the campaign, said: “We want to see the agency do more to actively engage with the local community, seek their views and record their experiences of flooding to augment the modelling for the scheme.”

The proposals also include a mixture of walls up to 1.65m high and flood embankments between Caversham Bridge and Nire Road in Lower Caversham as well as walls between the bridges south of the river.

They would require the removal of large numbers of trees and hedges, which the campaigners say would impact wildlife.

For more information on the proposals, visit

To support the campaign, email

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