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The Jubilee River story - Burstwick Drain - Dredging does work !

Press release put out after a meeting with Craig McGarvey EA, Graham Stuart and Ron Smith - on 17th Jan 2011.

Burstwick Drain East Riding of Yorkshire

Image below:  Vast amount of mud down stream of clough doors

Image below:  Drain Up stream of Clough Door that cannot discharge effectively due to the mud down stream


At a recent meeting with Holderness MP Graham Stuart, Ron Smith Chairman Burstwick Flood Group and Craig McGarvey of the EA the National Dredging Study methods and draft report was discussed. The EA’s final report of the National Dredging Study is shortly to be released that will confirm that in the case of the pilot study of the Burstwick Drain dredging does reduce flood risk.

It was agreed that the drain outlet down stream of the Burstwick Clough doors will be dredged in the near future.

For many years’ local farmers, IDB’s and more recently flood action groups campaigned for routine maintenance dredging to be done but was this was resisted by the EA as their opinion at that time was it would do little to reduce flood risk. East Riding Council and Burstwick United a local flood action group with the help of Keyingham Drainage Board contracted a Dutch consultant to comment on flood risk reduction the subsequent report stated that dredging and maintenance could improve the flow by 25% - 50%. The EA’s new dredging study was very thorough and used a sophisticated mathematical model to produce the results. Hopefully the final report when released will clearly demonstrate that dredging is cost effective in reducing flood risk.

Ron Smith Chairman of the local flood group Burstwick United said "I would like to thank the EA for the hard work that has gone into this report that was mainly done in house. There may even be further benefits as the average drain level will be lower thus potentially reducing the water table in the lower parts of the catchment and therefore able to absorb a larger portion of a high return period event, it is expected that other drain outfalls in the area like Stoney Creek that form part of the Keyingham Drain could also benefit if selected area’s are dredged"

Editors Comment: The modern way Virtual Maintenance !!!!!!

We seemed to have entered and era of virtual maintenance but hot air and lots of experts sitting around talking about it do not move the mud!! The farmers, IDB and local flood groups have an instinct for these sort of things and is available free of charge. The cost of meeting reports to see if the work is required is frequently far far greater than just doing the work…… so just do it and study the effects the EA will be seen as doing something practical, not seen to be just to talking about it and make better use of dwindling budgets!

Ron Smith FIET
Chairman Burstwick United (Local Flood Defence Group)
Member HFDG (Holderness Flood Defence Group)
Trustee/Director National Flood Forum
Tel 01964624135 Mo 07811963818