Historic Todmorden stone bridge to be rebuilt

Todmorden bridge

Sent on behalf of the Environment Agency

Work to rebuild an historic stone bridge, destroyed by the summer floods at Todmorden, will start in the next few weeks.

 The 18th century bridge, near Shade Chapel, collapsed after torrential rain transformed Walsden Water into a raging torrent on 29 July.

 Environment Agency contractors will rebuild it as part of a programme of repairs. Commencing next week, the works in the area are expected to be largely completed by Christmas.

 Temporary traffic lights will have to be installed to enable the work to progress.

 Mark Tupman, Environment Agency Project Manager, said:

“The bridge provides access to property and carries high voltage electricity cables to a sub-station on the other side of the river.

 “The work at Shade will ensure that the level of flood protection provided by the Todmorden Flood Alleviation Scheme further downstream is maintained.”

Part of the original bridge structure remains but is unstable. The deck and parapets will be reconstructed using reclaimed local stone to ensure it does not look out of place in the surrounding conservation area.

 The final phase of the Todmorden Flood Alleviation Scheme is now almost complete and the Environment Agency will use the main contractors, VolkerStevin, to undertake the repair works at Shade.

The Environment Agency and Calderdale Council have awarded a contract to Skipton-based engineering consultants, Jeremy Benn Associates, to develop a range of schemes to reduce the risk of flooding across the Calder Valley.

These will be designed to protect properties from river, surface water, upland run-off and canal flooding. The schemes will be developed between now and February and consultation with the affected communities will begin in the New Year.

 Cllr Tim Swift, Calderdale Council’s Leader, said:

“The ongoing work and awarding of this contract shows the Council and Environment Agency’s ongoing support for flood prevention works in the Upper Calder Valley. The works are part of the Calderdale flood recovery programme, helping local people and businesses become more prepared for flooding.

 “Flood awareness month runs through November and this is an ideal opportunity for residents and businesses at risk of flooding to look at preventative actions they can take, such as preparing an interactive personal flood action plan. Details are available on the Environment Agency’s website.”

 Once fully developed, the proposals will be subject to financial and planning approvals.

 The Environment Agency and Calderdale Council are planning to spend up to £3 million to reduce flood risk in the Calder Valley. Construction will begin from summer 2014.

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