Millions pledged to fix flood defences in Matlock

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The Environment Agency has pledged between £3.5m and £5m to restore Matlock’s flood defences.

The work will benefit over 50 homes and businesses by reinstating the River Derwent flood defences.

Preparatory work is expected to start in early June and, while options are still being assessed, it is likely this will involve temporary alterations to Matlock Bridge to reinstate two-way traffic for a period.

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These essential works will pave the way for the main construction work due to begin in summer to replace the flood wall behind businesses in Crown Square, Matlock that collapsed after this year’s February storms.

The collapsed flood wallThe collapsed flood wall
The collapsed flood wall

Local people are invited to a community drop-in event in Matlock on May 19 from 2.30pm to 5.30pm to find out more about these essential preparatory works and the expected impact on roads and traffic.

The longer-term work to reinstate the River Derwent flood defences follows a temporary measure that the Environment Agency carried out last month in which 100 2-tonne rock-filled bags were transferred by crane into the River Derwent, adding to the 50 bags that were placed there in February to reduce erosion and limit damage to the Environment Agency flood wall.

Naomi Doughty, Project Manager for the Environment Agency, said: “It’s great that funding for this major work has been secured to protect 50 homes and businesses in Matlock from flooding.

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“We have started to design an engineered solution to replace the collapsed wall that is likely to be delivered in multiple construction phases. We aim to have the bulk of the work in place before the winter. We’re keeping a close eye on the construction programme and the need to consider temporary measures as a contingency plan.

“We then expect to continue work in stages throughout 2023 so we can make the structure look more aesthetically pleasing and in-keeping with the local character and heritage of Matlock.

“We apologise in advance for any disruption caused by these works and we’re grateful for the patience and support of the local community.”

Derbyshire County Council’s Cabinet Member for Highways Assets and Transport, Councillor Kewal Athwal Singh, said: “I’m pleased to see that the Environment Agency have found the money to fix this important part of the flood defences for Matlock.

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“We realise that the work will mean some disruption to traffic in the town, but this work needs doing as soon as possible to protect homes and businesses.”

A spokesperson for Derbyshire Dales District Council said: “Derbyshire Dales District Council is pleased to be able to work with our partners at the Environment Agency and Derbyshire County Council on this important project.”

Sarah Dines, Member of Parliament for Derbyshire Dales said: “I am absolutely delighted to hear that the Environment Agency will be reinstating the River Derwent flood defences.

"Resolving flooding issues in Derbyshire Dales has been at the top of my list of priorities since my election 2019.’’