On Thursday evening 16 July, 30 or so parishioners met in South Hinksey Village Hall with Peter Collins and Magnus Williams from the Environment Agency (EA). We were pleased that local farmer Nick Frearson and a land agent on behalf of landowner Oxford City Council, were present too: they are important stakeholders in the project.
Engineer Magnus Williams presented his initial design ideas for groundwork to support deployment of temporary barriers for the village when flooding threatens. Magnus is talking to individual householders to ensure that everyone is happy with the specifics of the proposals.
We’re grateful to the Vale of White Horse District Council for providing £60k for the works and to the EA for providing the engineering design input, obtaining of permissions and so on.
We hope that things can move ahead as fast as possible as winter approaches and the risk of our flooding increases yet again.
Peter Collins, EA’s Asset Management Performance Team Leader for the Oxford area updated us on the aims and progress of the scheme.
Many thanks to Magnus and Peter for giving up their evening to meet us, much appreciated.
South Hinksey: groundwork for temporary flood barriers
Permissions have to be obtained, plans drawn and contracts agreed, so it will be a time till diggers appear. Funding is thanks to the Vale of White Horse District Council. Execution is shared between the Council and the Environment Agency. Surveying has begun. Work on the ground is now expected to begin in September.
South Hinksey’s community demo last October sought financial support for groundwork so we would be able to use temporary flood barriers to protect the village. Great news that our Vale District Council has agreed to pay for this groundwork – needed to level the land, and provide for crossing a field ditch.
Permissions have to be sought, plans drawn and contracts agreed, so it will be some time till diggers appear. Surveying has already begun.
While the Environment Agency cannot promise barriers till the day, the omens are good. The ground will be ready, as will our community team to put the barrier up.
9 March 2013
We have been urging that this serious bottleneck near Redbridge be sorted out since 2007. Improvements were made in 2009, but more was needed.
Now there is a multi-partner project between Thames Water, Network Rail, Oxford City Council, Vale of White Horse District Council and Oxfordshire County Council to make further improvements. Delays due to legal issues have now been resolved, thanks to help from Oxford’s two MPs, Nicola Blackwood and Andrew Smith. We hope work will now start in early April, but as things are now almost a year late we will only be sure when it actually begins. Nevertheless, action is in sight, and will help reduce the flood risk for many people.
10 July 2012
OFA is hosting a meeting with our partners, to develop proposals for further flood relief for Oxford
There have been significant changes in recent months in the way flood risk management is funded. Partners are being encouraged to work together to find cost effective solutions and to tackle all types of flood risk in a joined up way. Oxford had been identified as a priority area for attention based on the potential number of homes at significant risk. OFA has learned that the Thames Regional Flood and Coastal Committee (RFCC) is keen to promote flood risk management measures in areas such as Oxford and that funding to assist in the development of schemes is potentially available.
The Committee, which approves the programme of schemes in the Thames region, has invited proposals large or small where the cost-benefit analysis can be shown to be positive. The Committee is receptive to proposals from the lead local flood authority, which for Oxford is Oxfordshire County Council, to understand and address surface water risks and the relationship with river flooding. It is also interested in re-examining work undertaken as part of the Oxford Flood Risk Management Strategy to establish whether any of the works can be taken forward under the new funding regime. Collaboration between local agencies and cost sharing are being encouraged under new government rules.
In response to this opportunity OFA has convened a meeting of the County, City and Vale Councils, the Environment Agency and Network Rail to discuss potential schemes which might be put forward. The meeting will take place on 27 July in South Hinksey.
A considerable amount of time and money went into modelling the aborted £100m Oxford Flood Risk Management Scheme. We believe elements of this scheme could be turned into fundable proposals. Also a number of measures suggested by OFA over the last few years could be taken up.
We have had a very positive response from the various local bodies to the idea of a meeting and are looking forward to working with them. We will keep you informed of the outcomes of the meeting.
The Vale of White Horse District Council has installed new culverts under a causeway across a field next to the village. This will keep flood water moving rather than pooling in this field. Thank you to District Engineer Peter Dela.
Edit: here in action in 2012, draining the field at the top:
30 July 2009
Members of South Hinksey Parish Council and Peter Rawcliffe of OFA met on site in the village with Peter Dela, Chief Engineer for the Vale of White Horse District Council. Under discussion was the provision of culverts under a raised causeway which leads to the electricity substation on the edge of the village. The causeway dams back water, causing pooling right beside the village early in flood events. Now that Redbridge is being opened up there is a real prospect of getting water away early, so provision of these culverts is important. Hopefully permissions from the landowner and farmer and EA approval will be forthcoming. There seems every prospect that funding will be available from the District Council.