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Revealed: £1m masterplan to boost flood defences around Stafford rivers

By Richard Guttridge | Stafford | News | Published:

A £1 million scheme to improve flood defences and boost wildlife around rivers in Stafford has been revealed.

The swollen River Penk outside Penkridge on Whiston Road last May

The Stafford Brooks project would see major improvements made to habitats in the drainage areas from the Rivers Sow and Penk, creating more green space for families to enjoy.

Environment bosses are keen to improve areas around the rivers to attract more wildlife, as well as extra visitors, to the area and said the scheme would bring major benefits for the area.

The River Penk in Penkridge flooded last May

A new report on the project said Stafford Brooks would "reconnect people and communities with green spaces and watercourses in their local area to enjoy as part of a healthy lifestyle".

Improvements will be made along 9km of watercourse and impact on up to 240 hectares of habitat.

Work will include improving duck steps on Riverside to create a pocket park, a new boardwalk on Kingsmead Marsh, enhancement works to Kingston Pool and Bluebell Wood at Stafford Grammar School.

Work will be carried out to reduce the risk of flooding along the River Penk

A £100,000 urban drainage scheme will also be carried out at Rising Brook to try and protect surrounding areas from flooding.

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Flood defences would be improved near the M6, from junctions 13 to 15, M6 junctions 13-15 including removing a weir at Rising Brook. If the bid for funding is successful, work on the project would start in January and be completed in early 2023.

The report said: "The aim of the project is to bring about a number of improvements for flood risk alleviation, habitat connectivity and access to green and blue infrastructure for health and wellbeing."

The million scheme will improve flood defences and boost wildlife around rivers

Stafford Borough Council said it would seek funding from the European Regional Development Fund and Highways England for the project.

Councillor Jonathan Price believes the scheme will be a huge boost for the town.

He said: "I welcome this project. We need to safeguard more of our green space and rivers for generations to appreciate and use."

Richard Guttridge

By Richard Guttridge
Investigations Editor - @RichG_star

Investigations Editor for the Express & Star.

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