Rochdale flood defence scheme secures £5m funding

A £46m project to protect up to 1,000 homes in Rochdale and Littleborough is set to start next summer after the Government confirmed a £5m funding package.

The scheme, supported by the Environment Agency and Rochdale Council, will see storage reservoirs built along the River Roch and its tributaries from Littleborough to Rochdale town centre.

It also includes other flood alleviation measures, such as raised walls, and improvements to bridges and culverts, across Green Vale Brook, Town House Brook, and Buckley Brook.

The funding follows the Boxing Day floods of 2015, where more than 300 homes were severely damaged while a further 18,000 properties were left without power.

The new scheme, expected to cost a total of £46m, will protect 1,000 homes and 200 businesses from flooding, as well as protecting local infrastructure including the Metrolink network.

Funded by the council, the Government, Transport for Greater Manchester, and the North West Regional and Coastal Flood Committee, is estimated to deliver £455m of economic benefits to the area over its lifetime.

Working with the council, the Environment Agency will now finalise its preferred plan for the scheme with a start date pencilled in for summer 2019. A consultation on the plans is due to launch in September.

Cllr Neil Emmott, cabinet member for environment at Rochdale Borough Council, said: “We saw first-hand the devastation the boxing days floods caused here in Rochdale, with people’s homes and businesses severely affected.

“A number of flood defence measures have already been put in place since these events, including the storage basin at Calder Brook, but this is by far the biggest flood alleviation project in the borough and it’s something we’ve been working on with the Environment Agency for a number of years. This will have a transformative effect on the areas around the River Roch and make a huge difference to our residents and businesses.”

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