By Rebecca Hannant
A £2.7m flood reduction and water improvement project will be carried out at Hornsea Mere.
After Hornsea homes and businesses have suffered from multiple floods in 2007, 2012 and 2019, East Riding Council secured funding for the Mere Water Level and Water Quality Scheme.
The project will see the construction of two wetland lagoons along Foss Dyke, which will store flood water during periods of intense rainfall to reduce the risk of flooding to homes and businesses in the town. In addition to benefits of avoiding flood risk, the scheme is also set to improve water quality to both the Mere and the downstream watercourses through the sensitive design of the constructed wetlands. Other benefits will also include the creation of new habitats for wildlife and improve tourism to the lake.
Councillor Chris Matthews, the council’s portfolio holder for environment and climate change said: “This is another example of a fantastic flood scheme to be delivered by the council.
“I am especially encouraged that the scheme will provide additional environmental enhancements to improve water quality and biodiversity at the Mere.
“Once complete, the scheme will reduce flood risk to many properties in Hornsea and I look forward to seeing the scheme progress over the coming years.”
Dean Hamblin, flood and coastal risk management senior adviser at the Environment Agency, said: “It’s great to see the progression of another project that will better protect homes and businesses in the East Riding.
“This forms part of significant ongoing investment in flood schemes across Yorkshire and the Humber, with over half a billion pounds invested since 2015 – more than any other part of the country.
“In addition to reducing flood risk associated with Foss Dyke, this innovative scheme will also deliver water quality improvements to Hornsea Mere and increase biodiversity in the area through the creation of additional wetland habitats.
“This clearly demonstrates that working with natural processes and using natural flood management measures can be an efficient, cost-effective and sustainable way of delivering multiple outcomes and benefits.”
For the next stage, the council will engage with key project partners and the local community as part of the development of the scheme and the detailed design process. Subject to planning permission and obtaining the necessary permissions and consents, it is expected that construction will begin in early 2024.