Leeds & West Yorkshire

Work on flood-hit Mytholmroyd under way

Mytholmroyd floods Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Mytholmroyd suffered severe flooding in December 2015

The floods minister has visited a West Yorkshire village to see design options for a £15m flood alleviation scheme.

Mytholmroyd suffered severe flooding in December 2015 and it is hoped the new project will protect 400 properties.

The Environment Agency (EA) is buying 10 homes, which will be demolished to allow the widening of the River Calder's channel.

Therese Coffey MP said she expected design options to be finalised "by the end of June".

Survey work found the main cause of Mytholmroyd's river flooding was narrow sections and low bridges. The EA plans to replace bridges and raise flood walls.

Image caption Some of the homes have already been demolished

Construction work is expected to last two years with homes and businesses near Caldene Bridge purchased for "fair market rates".

Adrian Gill, of the EA, said: "Some houses were damaged beyond repair by the 2015 floods but all were purchased by agreement with the owners.

"For many involved it was a very difficult decision but overall this is the right thing to do for Mytholmroyd."

Some have already been demolished, including 13 Calder Grove where Callum Marsden's grandparents lived for 57 years.

Clear silt

Mr Marsden said: "I don't think it is necessary to knock houses down to widen the river."

"I hope this work [demolition of the houses] is worth it", he added.

His grandparents, who are in their 80s, have moved into a new home.

Barry Greenwood, of the Upper Calder Valley Flood Protection group, said he was happy to see work to clear silt and shale from the river, although the problems had first been raised in 2012.

The village is at the confluence of the Calder River and a brook.

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