The Environment Agency’s £30 million upgrade of Burton-upon-Trent’s flood defences is complete, with the defences already demonstrating their value to the town.
The official opening was scheduled on July 16. Will Groves, senior flood risk adviser for the Environment Agency, said: "We’re delighted to successfully deliver upgraded flood defences for the community of Burton-upon-Trent, which will reduce the risk flooding to 4,500 homes and 1,000 businesses."
He added: "Overall, the improved defences, which total 3.7 kilometres from Branston to Clay Mills, are water tight and were already in action protecting the community from the impacts of Storm Christoph earlier this year."
The project follows work carried out between 2005 and 2007 and in all, Burton has some 9 kilometres of upgraded defences.
The Environment Agency has also supported East Staffordshire Borough Council in work to improve the areas around the library and leisure centre. The council secured a £3 million grant from Greater Birmingham & Solihull Local Enterprise Partnership to carry out additional public realm enhancements. This work includes a wetland area with a boardwalk and is due to be completed by March 2022.
In addition to improving existing defences, the Environment Agency is constructing further defences near Branston Water Park off the A38 after some 18 properties were impacted in the 2020 floods. This work is expected to be completed by next spring 2022.
While these defences are a major boost for the town, people still need to know what to do when flooding is expected so they are urged to check their flood risk, and sign up for free flood warnings to keep up-to-date with the latest situation.