Green light for village flood alleviation scheme

The railway track through Feniton. Picture Google Maps

The railway track through Feniton. Picture Google Maps - Credit: Archant

Work to lay new pipes set to get under way

Work to lay pipes for the latest phase of Feniton’s flood alleviation scheme is on track for this October.

The work is aimed at reducing the risk of flooding to more than 70 homes in the village.

It involves a system of channels and culverts to divert water around Feniton and away from properties at risk.

The first two phases, consisting of new channels and improvements downstream of the village are complete, with phase three currently being progressed and phase four due to be constructed next year.

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Following approval by Network Rail of the connection of a pipe beneath the railway this October, East Devon District Council has been working with the company which it has appointed to complete the detailed design and approvals for that section of the works.

EDDC is discussing with Network Rail the terms of the contract for the construction of the works and, in particular, how the £4,000 per minute liability for reopening the railway line is managed as the scheme cannot proceed without measures being in place to manage this risk to the council’s finances.

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It is a precaution in the event of the engineering works overrunning.

Network Rail is due to complete all of phase three’s design work in June so a contractor can be appointed and the planned works completed during October.

EDDC will be working with local landowners to make sure access is in place with the relevant legal notice served for this period.

If all goes to plan, the council anticipates that the design work for phase four will be undertaken during the winter, with the actual construction of the flood alleviation scheme taking place in spring 2020, when the weather is warmer, which means the work can be done more quickly with less disruption to local residents. The work involves building channels to intercept flood water upstream of the village, and constructing the remainder of the culvert to link the sections already completed.

John Golding, EDDC’s strategic lead for housing, health and environment, said: “It’s great we’re now moving forwards on this important project, working constructively with Network Rail to ensure this key part of the scheme is in place without undue risk to the council’s finances.”

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