Middlesbrough's £4.8m flood scheme complete

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Image source, Environment Agency
Image caption,
The scheme was a partnership between the Environment Agency and Middlesbrough Council

A £4.8m flood scheme protecting about 500 homes and businesses has been completed.

Middlesbrough's Marton West Beck defences include a screen to stop debris reaching areas where it could build up and block waterflow.

Upstream storage areas on Newham Beck will slow waterflow during heavy rainfall, the Environment Agency said.

Regional flood risk manager Jamie Fletcher said the project would also bring benefits for wildlife.

"Schemes such as this are essential for helping the North East adapt to climate change, which is bringing with it more extreme weather conditions and an increased flood risk," he said.

Image source, Environment Agency
Image caption,
Flood walls and an extended trash screen have been installed on Marton West Beck near Albert Park

Improved flood walls and drainage are intended to reduce the flood risk from the beck, sea and surface water.

Construction on the project, run by the Environment Agency and Middlesbrough Council, started in summer 2020.

Image source, Environment Agency
Image caption,
The scheme has also provided an allotment, bird and bat boxes, and a bee pollinating area in Albert Park

The local authority's executive member for the environment, Barrie Cooper, said the defences were "hugely important".

"For those affected by flooding, the impact can be catastrophic and life-changing," he said.

"These state-of-the-art defences are a great example of partnership working, and will give peace of mind to more than 500 families and many businesses for many years to come."

Middlesbrough and the wider economy will save an estimated £58m in the future due to reduced flood-related damage, the agency said.

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