The mock-up of a flood risk development scheme for Preston and South Ribble is expected to protect about 3,600 residential properties and more than 300 businesses.
With a goal of lowering the flood risk for those in Preston Riversway up to the M6 and Higher Walton, the proposals include flood walls and embankments in various strategic locations. The new flood defence scheme has been developed by The Environment Agency, Lancashire County Council, and additional partners.
The need for new defences in Preston
Currently, the flood defences in place for River Ribble were built at different points between the 1920s and 1980s and are needing to be replaced. Some homeowners and businesses in PR postcodes have found it expensive to get insurance for their properties, even in locations that haven’t had a flood in 50 years.
In the surrounding area, the biggest number of addresses considered to have a high risk of flooding are located in postcodes starting with PR2, which are mainly around Preston’s dock estate and the suburb Ashton. When the flood defence scheme is completed, it is expected to help Preston’s property market, with the expectation of it becoming easier to get home insurance and mortgages.
The project is dependent on European funding, but it has been said that it won’t be affected by Brexit. Hundreds of locals attended a recent drop-in information session to inspect the plans and offer feedback.
Works could start on the scheme this year and are expected to take in between five and six years to finish. Ground surveys have already begun and will take several months to complete.