Reducing the Risk of Flooding

Managing Flood Risk in St Asaph

Work is progressing to develop the long term flood risk management scheme for St Asaph. The Business Case is now nearly complete and will be submitted to the Welsh Government for approval.

The preferred option for the Scheme, selected by Natural Resources Wales (NRW) following extensive modelling, would see the city’s flood defences improved to reduce the risk of flooding from an event greater than that experienced in 2012.

The Scheme will involve raising embankments and building new flood walls, as well as a number of innovative projects upstream to manage flood risk naturally.

Since June 2015, Andy Brown is managing the scheme for NRW. Based in NRW Buckley Office, Andy has delivered over a dozen capital schemes including the Abergele flood alleviation scheme.

Andy said: “We will aim to minimise the visual impact of the scheme, and the extent it encroaches onto people’s property, whilst providing improved flood protection for the city.”

Details of the scheme will be shared by NRW staff during the St Asaph Flood Partnership Meeting on 15 July. A briefing session will be organised by NRW on the 28th July for Flood Wardens and Local Councillors. If you have any queries, contact Andy Brown.

As well as reducing flood risk, the Scheme is being designed to provide wider benefits to nearby communities and the local environment. For example we are looking to improve the walking surface along the embankment.

NRW’s website will be updated shortly to provide more details on the Scheme. A public drop in session will be arranged in St Asaph before the Scheme is submitted to the local planning authority.

Maintaining the current defences

NRW has recently finished cutting grass along the entire flood embankment on the River Elwy, and will continue to check when another cut is needed. Limiting vegetation growth is a vital part of maintaining the integrity of the embankment – it ensures a healthy cover of grass and discourages animals from burrowing into the embankment. Where trees have been felled, we will be using a stump grinder to remove the stumps as they can obstruct grass cutting. We can then cut grass mechanically rather than using manual strimmers, which will further improve maintenance.

Our inspectors will continue to inspect the river every month to ensure that there are no fallen trees or other blockages in the channel.

Flood Warning Service and Community Flood Plans

Three Flood Warning areas cover St Asaph and part of Rhuddlan. These are:-

  • River Elwy at Lower Denbigh Road – there are 16 properties in this flood warning area of which 15 are registered to receive our flood warning service
  • River Elwy at St Asaph – there are 418 properties/businesses in this flood warning area of which 374 are registered to receive our flood warning service
  • River Elwy A55 to Rhuddlan – there are 165 properties/businesses in this flood warning area of which 148 registered to receive our flood warning service

NRW’s aim is to ensure that all properties are registered to receive it’s free flood warning service. If you are not registered, call us on 0300 065 3738 and we will register you direct.

Two Community Flood Plans covering three Flood Warning Areas. These are:-

  • St Asaph Community Flood Plan – Ken Hodgkinson is the Senior Flood Warden and Peter Scott is the Assistant Flood Warden
  • Rhuddlan and Bodelwyddan Community Flood Plan – County Councillor Arwel Roberts is the Senior Flood Warden and Gareth Rowlands is the Assistant Flood Warden

There are 34 volunteering flood wardens in St Asaph and seven in Rhuddlan and Bodelwyddan. Each flood warden has been assigned an area or street, and they are your point of contact in these areas/streets.

If you would like to receive information on your Community Flood Plan or would like to know who your flood warden is, please contact Ken Hodgkinson or County Councillor Arwel Roberts.

Rhuddlan and Bodelwyddan Community Flood Plan

NRW has been working with seven Volunteer Flood Wardens from Rhuddlan and Bodelwyddan to develop a Community Flood Plan – due to be completed by the end of this month.

The Plan, owned by the community and managed by the flood wardens, helps the community establish strong links with NRW, Denbighshire County Council and emergency services, before, during and after a flood.

Parts of Rhuddlan and Bodelwyddan are located within the River Elwy A55 to Rhuddlan Flood Warning Area (for flooding from the River Elwy) as well as the Clwyd Left Bank and Clwyd Right Bank Flood Warning Areas (for flooding from the sea).

The Flood Wardens know which properties are at risk from flooding either from the river or sea.  They will be door knocking all properties identified as being at risk in the community, and will encourage residents to sign up to receive flood warning, and will encourage property owners to prepare and take appropriate action.

Multi Agency Flood Exercise

Recommendations and lessons learnt from Exercise Elwy, which took place last October, are now being implemented.  Flood Wardens have reviewed feedback received and are working with NRW to implement any changes needed. During the exercise, the temporary defences were erected, and flood wardens played a key role in exercising the community flood plan.

Riverside Land Owners – Flood Defence Consent

A polite reminder to all riverside landowners…… if you want to carry out works in, over, under or near a “main river” (such as the River Elwy, River Clwyd and Glascoed Stream), or in a flood plain or flood defence, you will need to apply for NRW’s Flood Defence Consent.

You will need to obtain our consent to make sure that your activities do not cause a flood risk or make existing flood risks worse. Consent is also necessary to ensure your work will not interfere with our work or adversely affect the local environment, fisheries or wildlife. Further information about the Flood Defence Consent applications is available on our website at: www.naturalresources.wales