Somerset West and Taunton Council has launched a public consultation on a proposal to create new flood defences between Firepool Lock and Obridge in Taunton.
The consultation is seeking views on the proposed scheme which will benefit 219 properties in the Priorswood and Crown Industrial Estates and Bathpool by preventing floodwater from the River Tone entering the Bridgwater and Taunton Canal, reducing the risk of floodwater overspilling into Maiden’s Brook and Allen’s Brook.
Plans to manage the flood risk from the River Tone and its complex network of tributaries were identified in the Taunton Strategic Flood Alleviation Improvements Scheme (TSFAIS) approved by SWT in February 2020.
The document sets out a number of improvements to reduce flood risks over the next 30-plus years. Two of the short-term projects – the Firepool Lock to Obridge scheme and another to improve flood defences along the left bank of the River Tone between Town Bridge and Frieze Hill providing flood alleviation to the Firepool Regeneration site, North Town area – are underway.
Both are now going through the design, consents and permissions phase and will be subject to public consultation with feedback helping to shape the final schemes.
Consultation on the proposal for Firepool Lock to Obridge started on Monday 11 July and runs until Sunday 7 August.
The plan is to raise Firepool Lock gates and the area around them; and create defences between the River Tone and the Bridgwater to Taunton Canal, from Firepool Lock to the A358 Obridge Viaduct.
Details can be found in the TSFAIS with the consultation available at Taunton Strategic Flood Alleviation Improvements Scheme – Somerset West & Taunton – Citizen Space (somersetwestandtaunton.gov.uk)
This scheme is being led by Somerset West and Taunton Council with support from the Environment Agency (EA). The engineering consultancy firm WSP is leading on the design and consents.
Following the consultation SWT will consider whether modifications need to be made whilst still being in compliance with Government regulations and will then continue to work in partnership with the EA and other key stakeholders to secure delivery of the project.