Work under way to cut flood risks

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WORK is under way to protect homes in Cramlington from flooding.

The Environment Agency started work on Monday to improve the flow of water through a culvert carrying a burn under the road at Shankhouse Bridge.

At the moment the water is held back by the culvert forming a pool before it goes under the road, posing a risk of flooding.

The work involves building three walls to direct the flow of water better and to help increase the maximum flow through the culvert at times of flooding.

The main benefit of the work is that the water level on the Horton Burn will be lower when it is flooded, allowing surface water drains to discharge for longer periods of time and reduce the chance of homes being flooded.

Environment Agency project manager James Carradice said: “It is important that we do this community flood risk work to protect people and properties from flooding in Cramlington.

“The main risk to properties in the area is from the burn being held back against the front of the culvert, which can cause surface water flooding.

“We are minimising that risk by building these walls to improve the volume of water that can flow through the culvert during a flood and reducing the risk to local homes.”

The concrete and gabion basket walls will be about 10 metres long and two metres high.

The work, costing around £60,000, is expected to take six weeks to complete.

The project is being carried out in partnership with the Living Waterways project.

The project has worked with Eastlea and Northburn Primary Schools in Cramlington to incorporate art by children into the new walls along the burn.

Environment Agency officers have also been working in the area to prevent pollution getting into the burn from Cramlington Industrial Estate.