Officials ask residents to report blocked gulleys to help reduce the risks of floods this winter
A £162,000 flood alleviation project carried out in an area near Riddlesdown Station has been completed by the council before the worst of the winter weather sets in.
A range of measures have been put in place to help prevent or reduce flooding and, in the event of severe weather, enable the council to respond swiftly.
“These measures are designed using improved environmentally friendly practices that allow excess water to drain more naturally,” the council says.
Parts of the borough, particularly in Kenley and up to Purley, along the Godstone Road and the course of the Caterham Bourne, were flooded for several weeks in 2014. Promised remediation works arising from those floods were cancelled by the council in 2020.
Water level pressure sensors and cameras have been installed inside roadside gullies, allowing alarms to be set. Should water levels rise, the system will alert the council maintenance team so that they can provide a rapid response.
On Lower Barn Road, towards Riddlesdown Station, flooding would routinely occur at the bottom the hill. The measures introduced included a new soakaway to store water during extreme rainfall, allowing it to dissipate naturally into the aquifer that lies deep below ground.
In Kenley, further interventions include the installation of a penstock gate to manage high flows of rain in the Bourne between Bourne View Allotments and Roke School.
In the same area, the council has installed a “Datasphere” which provides information via sensors and sends email alerts when water levels begin to rise. The system also has a CCTV camera at the allotments which gives live video streaming of the conditions on site.
The council resilience team is working to identify and prioritise other areas of Croydon where similar schemes could be used to alleviate flooding and to provide long-term protection against the effects of climate change.
“We must act now to make places where people live, work, and travel resilient to the effects of extreme weather, including flooding,” said Muhammad Ali, the council cabinet member for “sustainable Croydon”.
“Responding to the Croydon Climate Crisis Commission recommendations, this investment is a step in the right direction towards helping to protect communities from extreme weather conditions.”
Across the borough, the council also routinely cleanses gulleys using high-pressure machinery – an exercise more necessary over the coming couple of weeks as fallen leaves clog the kerbside drains.
Croydon Council says, “If residents see a gulley in need of cleansing, they are encouraged to contact our resilience department at 0208 726 6000 or via the council’s online reporting site.” Click here for details.
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