Agenda item

Update from RBWM

To receive an update from the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead.

Minutes:

The Flood Risk Manager stated he had undertaken a review of the Flood Risk Management Strategy and a consultation would be due to begin in the new year. Councillor Beer said he wanted advance notice of that. The Flood Risk Manager said it would be after the next Flood Liaison Group.

 

The works at Avenue Ascot had been completed and pipework was had been laid alongside the watercourse.

 

A downstream assessment had been carried out for the Waltham Road drainage scheme proposals and that was now with the commissioning team.

 

The proposed works at Coningsby Road were delayed by ecology and land ownership issues.

 

Scoping studies had been carried out to Cox Green Road and two other areas to assess a number of options to mitigate the flood risk. The Flood Risk Manager added if anyone had any potential capital schemes to put forward, they needed to submit them to Sue Fox at the Borough.

 

Harry Clasper stated he had hoped the Flood Risk Manager was going to address the Wraysbury Drain problem; a document had been circulated on the Drain by Ewan Larcombe. Councillor Lenton confirmed he had submitted a question to the next Full Council meeting. Mike Williams stated he saw contractors had visited the Weir Sluice. Ewan Larcombe stated the Wraysbury Drain worked ok for many years but diggers moved in and broke it. A sluice was put in the middle of the boards and it sort of got it working again. It was replaced in 2007 with a gate system that that made it worse. Contractors went in and spent £180k and that made it stop working altogether. The radial weir had been eroded and water ran straight past it and not through the Wraysbury Drain.

 

Councillor Lenton stated the question he was submitting to Full Council was when would the Drain be fixed and how much would it cost. The Flood Risk Manager said he worked for the Council since 2003 and he had looked at the lack of water in the drain and seen next to no flow coming into the Borough. If no water was coming into the Borough then there would be no water going into the drain. Ewan Larcombe responded that he was born and bred by the Wraysbury Drain and there was enough water in the area to drive the drain. The Flood Risk Manager said he had been out to site loads of times and there was little to no water coming into the Borough. He had photos showing no water coming into the Borough and there was no water going into the sluice either. Councillor Lenton said the Wraysbury Drain was misleading. It was a flood relief channel so the Borough needed to know if it would work in times of flood.

 

Councillor Beer stated the Flood Liaison Group was an outside body and not a council body, he found that out when the meeting was postponed. The Group needed to be recognised as an official Council body and he was flagging that issue up and asking the Forum for support. Councillor Kellaway said it should be the same set up as the Aviation Forum. Ewan Larcombe stated the Council was a designated flood authority and had a set of duties to perform. Councillor Beer asked the Forum to regularise it. The Chairman said he would raise it with the Lead Member. Councillor Beer commented the Forum had a very serious conflict. The Borough was officially opposed to Heathrow Expansion and was spending a lot of money to object to that; but the Minerals and Waste Plan listed Ham Island as a borrow pit. There should not be two different policies that were at odds with each other; the Flood Liaison Group gave recommendations and should do so on this matter. Councillor Kellaway stated Heathrow was going to judicial review. Councillor Beer responded he did not want the Borough to be a laughing stock when the public sees there are two policies which opposed each other. Councillor Kellaway replied the Forum heard Councillor Beers concerns but there was not much that could be done at that meeting.

 

Martin Coker stated he thanked everyone that came to the training day, it was very successful and he hope to run a training day every year. There was a very high attendance and it was a very useful, well attended event,