Morpeth floods - five years on

  • Description

    Five years ago this week the Northumberland market town of Morpeth suffered its worst flood in more than a century. A month's rain fell in 24 hours, the River Wansbeck burst its banks and almost 1,000 homes and businesses were swamped. Defences which had been built in the wake of the previous worst flood in 1963 were unable to cope with the deluge. How different it all looked this week as the river meandered gently by and water tinkled softly at the Bakehouse stepping stones, the scene of a raging torrent five years ago this weekend. Work began in earnest in March this year on a multi-million pound project to protect homes and businesses from the threat of future flooding. The environmental impact of the scheme is now becoming evident, especially on the High Stanners, where trees have been axed and the once open green sward is giving way to concrete blocks and brickwork as an embankment is built. The final bill for the work, which includes the creation of a water storage area upriver near Mitford, will be more than £21m. It is expected to be complete by Autumn 2014 - subject to the weather. The need for further flood protection is undoubted, but for a town whose motto 'Inter Sylvas et Flumina Habitans' means 'dwelling midst woods and water', there is a price to be paid beyond the monetary one. This is most obvious at the Stanners and at Mitford Road. This is one of the most picturesque parts of Morpeth and a popular spot for strollers, joggers, dog walkers, cyclists, young and old alike. Sadly, it is also vulnerable to the wrath of Mother Nature when the usually peaceful Wansbeck is in spate. For anyone whose home has been flooded in the past, this scheme can't be completed soon enough, and the fact that part of Morpeth's natural landscape is changing forever is worth the peace of mind it will hopefully bring. When the concrete is covered, the embankment is complete and grassed, and the workmen and machinery are gone, we will still be able to count ourselves fortunate to live in such beautiful surroundings. And those who fish the waters of the Wansbeck will be able to continue to do so in peace.
  • Owner

  • Source

    Youtube (Youtube)
  • License

    What does this mean? Unknown license check permission to reuse
  • Further information

    Resource type: Video
    Added by: Simon Cotterill
    Last modified: 10 years ago
    Viewed: 1457 times
    Picture Taken: Unknown
  • Co-Curate tags


Add a comment or share a memory.

Login to add a comment. Sign-up if you don't already have an account.


Co-Curate is a project which brings together online collections, museums, universities, schools and community groups to make and re-make stories and images from North East England and Cumbria. Co-Curate is a trans-disciplinary project that will open up 'official' museum and 'un-officia'l co-created community-based collections and archives through innovative collaborative approaches using social media and open archives/data.