Beales Corner, Bewdley, Flood Risk Management Scheme

Closes 31 Mar 2023

Opened 2 Mar 2021

Overview

Page created February 2021. Last updated 21 October 2022.

Flooding in Beales Corner

Bewdley is subject to significant flood risk from the River Severn and has flooded a number of times. The most significant flood events have been in 1947, 1965, 1998, 2000, 2002, 2004, 2008, 2014, 2020 and 2021. During the most recent events (2020, 2021 and 2022) some homes and businesses were flooded.

These flood events impact on people’s homes, businesses and the local economy. Transport links and commuter routes through the town are also affected. 

View of Bewdley during flooding of 2021

Background to the flood risk management scheme

Over the years a number of technical assessments have taken place to explore the possibility of a flood defence scheme at Beales Corner in Bewdley.

Unfortunately a Flood Risk Management Scheme has not been viable previously.  To date, measures, such as the temporary flood barriers and Property Level Resilience measures (e.g. flood gates, pumps and air brick covers for individual properties) have reduced the impact of flooding. However we recognise the limitations these solutions offer.

After the flooding in 2020, more funding was made available from Government for flood schemes nationally. This allowed us to re-look at options for a permanent Flood Risk Management Scheme for the area.

We are now developing a Flood Risk Management Scheme for the area. We are currently looking at options, carrying out ground investigations and talking with the community to help shape our thinking.  

On the 27th of July 2021 Minister Pow visited Bewdley and we are delighted to say that during this visit it was announced that Government has allocated £6.2m of growth funding for the Bewdley Left Bank Flood Risk Management scheme.

Minister Pow announces £6.2m Growth Funding towards the Beales Corner Flood Risk Management Scheme

This made the possibility of a scheme more viable. There are still risks to delivery that the Project Team needs to work through, such as securing planning consent, all historic consents and managing the large number of utilities that are located along the potential alignment of any raised defence. However, the Environment Agency together with all partners are committed to driving forward the delivery of this project.

Proposed scheme details

We undertook a range of community engagement events from March to June 2022 where we presented the initial proposed design. We have noted the feedback from these events and we are considering how we amend the design accordingly where possible. We plan to organise a further series of sessions in the autumn to discuss any changes we have made.   

The current solution consists of a combination of the demountable barriers, permanent raised walls and glass panels. There will be glass panels forming part of the defence at key locations, this will maintain views across the river.

The photos below show the approximate alignment and extend of the proposed demountable defences by Quayside and gives an artist impression of what the defences may look like on other sections of the scheme. 

The design aims for this scheme are to:

  • Reduce flood risk to people, properties, businesses, and highways resulting from overtopping of the River Severn
  • Deliver a flood risk management scheme that is supported by the local community
  • Integrate with and where possible enhance the natural environment, biodiversity and heritage value of the area
  • Design and develop a scheme which has minimal operational and maintenance requirements
  • Provide the same standard of protection as provided by the Severnside flood defence on the right bank.
  • Ensure the bridge remains open during flooding, benefiting the entire community of Bewdley.

We aim to make best possible use of the public money available and seek to maximise funding available through working in partnership.

The primary purpose of the scheme is to reduce the flood risk from the River Severn. Although it is not focussed on flood risk from drainage issues, we are working with Severn Trent Water and the local authorities to review these. The photo below shows the currently proposed barrier alignment and pumping arrangements.

image showing flood risk and the location of the proposed flood wall

Timescales – what we are doing and when

We have been working with our partners and key stakeholders to progress the scheme.

These are the timescales we are currently working towards for the next major milestones. Please note, these are still subject to change;

  • Autumn 2022 - Continue consultation on the potential outline design
  • December 2022 - submission of planning application 

Project update

October 2022

The Environment Agency held a drop-in event to update residents on progress on Beales Corner Flood Risk Management Scheme on Tuesday 18 October 2022.

The event was very well attended. We had 200 people through the door and over 50 people asked to be added to our mailing list.

In general residents were really pleased to see our progress and the changes we made  to the scheme following our last consultation in April.

We have taken away a number of comments and questions and over coming months we will consider if and how we can incorporate any further changes to the scheme in response to the suggestions made.  

A Frequently Asked Question document was shared on the day and is available at the bottom of this page.  This will be updated over the coming month with further answers to questions raised during the drop-in session.

If you missed the session, you can still contact us with any questions and comments through BLBFRMS@environment-agency.gov.uk.

July 2022

We have been engaging with various stakeholders, including Wyre Forest District Council, Worcestershire County Council, Historic England and Natural England to prepare for the submission of the planning application. We will let the community know as and when the planning application is ready for submission.

We have also been engaging with utility companies about utilities we may affect by our scheme. It is highly likely that we will need to undertake several utility alterations before being able to build the flood risk management scheme.

We have started engaging with the community, with a drop in event and a series of community meetings in the spring of 2022. We were pleased to see how well attended these sessions were. The photo below shows residents talking with our team at one of the community drop-in sessions in March

An online ‘Virtual room’ consultation was also made available to the community throughout May and June. 

We would like to take this opportunity to say thank you to all the residents and partners who took part in these engagement sessions.

We will continue to engage with the community in the autumn 2022. 

 

April 2022 

The Environment Agency and partners met with residents and community representatives at St Georges Hall at a drop in event on 5 April 2022 to discuss the Environment Agency proposals for reducing flood risk at Beales Corner, Bewdley.

Following on from the face to face drop in session, we are now launching the materials used at the meeting as part of a virtual display of the flood risk management scheme proposals. You can view the draft proposals using the following link:

https://bealesfrms.virtual-engage.com/

This virtual room will be available for people to “visit” any time up until 30 May 2022. NB July 2022: Please note- this link has now expired

At this point no final decisions have been made and we are very keen to hear your feedback to help shape the final proposals that will then form part of the planning application later this year.

March 2022

The Scheme is progressing well but remains a complex and challenging scheme

We now have potential outline design and will be presenting this to landowners and the Bewdley community in the coming weeks to seek feedback.

Monday 14 March 2022 14:00 - 19:00 - Post flooding recovery session.

Environment Agency Incident Recovery Team at Bewdley Rowing Club. The recovery session was for people to talk about the most recent flooding-  At this meeting the scheme wasn't discussed in detail, but residents were informed of and invited to future engagement event related to the scheme.

31 March 2022, 6.00pm to 8.00pm- Presentation to resident of Beales Corner 

MS Teams presentation to residents to update on progress, inviting questions, concerns and comments

December 2021

Over the last months, we have been working with our partners and key stakeholders to develop a potential outline design of a potential flood risk management scheme.

Over recent months we have undertaken further surveys to help develop the potential outline We continue to work with Historic England and local planning authority to understand the historic and conservation impact on the preferred design.

We are talking with partners about mitigation for any environmental impacts the scheme may have. We are talking with the local Highways department to ensure the scheme has minimal impact on traffic flow.

Future developments

The project is progressing. We are undertaking the following activities:

  • We are working with the utility companies to facilitate the relocation of services in preparation for the scheme.
  • We are finalising the potential outline design, which will be shared with key stakeholders, the community and landowners at the beginning of 2022.
  • We are preparing a community engagement meeting, which is likely to take place in January/ february 2022. Please keep your eyes out for our next newsletter with more information on the consultation.
  • We are working with the Local Planning Authority to progress the planning application.

Temporary barrier post incident review at Bewdley

Following the flood incident in February 2021 we completed our Post Incident Review for the Beales Corner Temporary Barrier System in August 2021 and shared our findings with the public.

The full report is available at the bottom of this page, alongside a letter to residents which provides a summary and explanation of the findings. New measures recommended by the review during the recent high flows on 11 December 2021 and again in February 2022.

Sharing information with you

We want to make sure that the community is engaged with the project and kept informed of progress.

We will provide you with further information about the scheme in the following ways:

• Our online information page

• Information displayed on Town Council website

• Regular newsletters (at key project points) issued via email, please see how to sign up below.

• Virtual or face to face meetings at key project points

• We are also happy to attend any community meetings we are invited to

Signing up to our newsletter

It is important to us to keep you up to date on our progress with this scheme. If you would like to receive our newsletter and updates, please email your contact details to BLBFRMS@environment-agency.gov.uk

Alternatively, you call our National Customer Contact Centre during office hours on 03708 506 506 and we will add you to our mailing list.

PLEASE NOTE- By providing us with your contact details you consent to the Environment Agency using the details provided to contact you with updates about the Beales Corner Flood Risk Management Scheme.

We will keep your contact details until the project is closed or until you withdraw your consent, whichever is sooner. You can withdraw your consent to receive these updates at any time by emailing us at BLBFRMS@environment-agency.gov.uk or calling 03708 506 506.

We will not share your details with any other third party without your explicit consent, unless we are required to by law. The Environment Agency is the data controller for the personal data you provide. For further information on how we deal with your personal data please see our Personal Information Charter on GOV.UK (search 'Environment Agency personal information charter') or contact our Data Protection team. Address: Data Protection team, Environment Agency, Horizon House, Deanery Road, Bristol, BS1 5AH. Email: dataprotection@environment-agency.gov.uk

You can follow us on Twitter too at @EnvAgencyMids as we will be tweeting about the work we are doing on this scheme.

Remaining flood aware

Please make sure you remain flood aware and ensure you are signed up to our flood warning service. Visit www.gov.uk/sign-up-for-flood-warnings or call 0345 988 1188 to sign up to get Flood Alerts and Warnings by phone, email and/or text message. This is a free service. Alternatively contact our Flood Resilience Engagement Advisors at Floodresilience@environment-agency.gov.uk

Know what to do when you receive a flood warning - use the 3 point plan.

Thank you for visiting our information page. Please keep visiting this page as we will be updating it regularly. This page will be open to the public until the end of construction.

If you have any feedback about this page, or use assistive technology (such as a screen reader) and need a version of any document in a more accessible format, please email BLBFRMS@environment-agency.gov.uk or call our National Customer Contact Centre on 03708 506 506.

Please tell us what format you need. It will help us if you say what assistive technology you use.

Give us your views

If you have any feedback about this page, or use assistive technology (such as a screen reader) and need a version of any document in a more accessible format, please email BLBFRMS@environment-agency.gov.uk

 or call our National Customer Contact Centre on 03708 506 506.

Please tell us what format you require.

 

Audiences

  • Businesses
  • Charities
  • Statutory organisations
  • NGOs
  • Members of the public
  • Elected representatives, including MPs
  • Local councils
  • IDBs
  • Local authorities
  • District and parish councils
  • Land owners
  • Drainage associations
  • RFCCs
  • Members of the public
  • Community groups
  • Flood action groups
  • Lead Local Flood Authorities
  • Members of the public
  • Town and parish councils
  • Regional Flood and Coastal Committees
  • Internal Drainage Boards
  • Engagement specialists/operational staff in Natural Resources Wales, local authorities and other risk management authorities

Interests

  • Flood management