11 Feb 2009

Puckshole flood improvements agreed (and snowman photos)

Last week there was the monthly Ruscombe Brook Action Group meeting - I have to note that I was feeling a little frustrated by the recent lack of progress but was very pleased by the meeting as we really refocused on what we were about with clear action plans. We have achieved huge amounts over the last couple of years but seemed to be loosing momentum - this is a great new focus and we agreed to submit a grant application re a new website, to work on a householders pack for info about how folk can get money back if they deal with their roof water....plus more but the main focus of the meeting was Puckshole...

Photos: Ian Kear from Stroud District Council joined the group - and a collection of snowman photos taken in the area

Ian Kear, of Stroud District Council joined the meeting for the first half - he took over from Bob Nightingale who was very supportive in getting the brook group started. Anyhow we looked at the next steps for reducing the flooding at Puckshole - there hasn't always been agreement about how best to take this forward - indeed there are many ways it could be done. It was therefore great to agree on the first phase with residents representatives and one of the landowners...

The meeting basically agreed priority must be given to:

- clearing out the culvert

- rebuilding the headwall

- installation of a new screen

- lowering the stream bed at the outlet of the culvert

The group also discussed additional possibilities, both for controlling water, and stabilising the banks and bed of the brook upstream of Puckshole. It was agreed more research is needed to see what measures will bring about the most benefits.

Various group members plan to consider the options for “Phase 2”. These include:

- stabilisation of the banks of the brook using willow to prevent further erosion

- reinforcing the stream bed at the outlet of the Wheeler’s Walk pipe to prevent it wearing away

- controlling the velocity of water flowing from the Wheeler’s Walk run-off (possibly using “Dragon’s Teeth")

- concreting the lane at Puckshole to further regulate water flows and prevent the track from washing away.

This week I am in the process of trying to set up a meeting between representatives of all the flood/brook groups in the area - this could be a useful way forward to input into the Councils' Core Strategy, ensure the Slad brook work is the most sustainable ways forward and more - it is about whole watershed catchment solutions....but enough for now....

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