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Great Ouse Catchment Project concludes third phase
- November 6, 2019

The Environment Agency has officially completed the third stage of its works on the Great Ouse Catchment Project which seeks to raise the height of the flooding embankment to protect more than 2,000 properties and over 67,000 hectares of agricultural land.

The Great Ouse Catchment Project, which was initially taken on by the Environment Agency in 2017, involves the heightening of the Middle Level Barrier Bank (MLBB) and part of the South Level Barrier Bank (SLBB) over the course of a four year period.

In terms of the work that is being carried out, construction can only take place during the summer months, meaning that works have and can only take place in the summers of 2017, 2018, 2019, and 2020, with a further year needing to be allowed for the growth of new grass and foliage in the summer of 2021.

Prolonged periods of wet weather, the evolving design of the new embankments, and the material inconsistencies which have resulted from it, have also resulted in a change to the intended profile of the embankment as well as extensions to the intended construction period.

The Environment Agency Operations Manager for the Great Ouse Catchment Project, Claire Jouvray stated: “We have had a really challenging year this year with road works impacting deliveries and the wet weather in September and October stopping work on the bank.

“Thanks to partners, our contractors, neighbours and local authorities we have been able to keep disruption to a minimum.

“We would like to thank the local community for their patience and understanding during this complex programme of work which will take longer than predicted at the outset.

“We will be holding public drop in events in the new year to showcase the work we have done so far, to outline the revised timescale for this vital scheme and discuss our plans for the Welney Wash road temporary barrier.”

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