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Craven District Council

Flood management works proposed in Skipton

Craven District Council has put forward plans to improve the flow of water along Gallow Syke, the stream that flows though Aireville Park, that will contribute to reducing the risk of flooding downstream.

The Environment Agency’s Flood Alleviation Scheme has already tackled the flood risks of Eller Beck and Waller Hill Beck, but Gallow Syke and Ings Beck still present a flood risk to the town, specifically along the Ings Lane Industrial Estate.

Gallow Syke, a tributary of Ings Beck, originates to the north of Skipton and flows through a series of culverts which are in need of repair to allow them to be safely managed in flood conditions.

The new plans will redesign the culvert entrances so water can be stored temporarily during flood events, delaying its release and reducing the impact on the industrial areas around Engine Shed Lane and Ings Lane. In normal conditions the areas would not hold water.

Craven District Council has now submitted a planning application for the reconstruction of culvert entrances, construction of a flood wall adjacent to the Leeds Liverpool Canal, and woodland management associated with the works.

The proposals are essential for the delivery of the £5 million Skipton Employment and Housing Growth scheme, funded by the Government’s Local Growth Fund, awarded by the York, North Yorkshire and East Riding Local Enterprise Partnership (YNYER LEP).

This includes upgrading Engine Shed Lane and Ings Lane, connecting Ings Lane to the bypass, improving pedestrian routes from Skipton Railway Station to key destinations, and supporting the redevelopment of the area around the station.

Following completion of the overall scheme, heavy goods vehicles would be diverted away from the town centre with direct access to the Skipton bypass from Engine Shed Lane via the new Wyvern Park development.

Councillor Simon Myers, Craven District Council’s lead member for Enterprising Craven, said: “During periods of intense rainfall, Ings Beck frequently causes flooding within the Ings Lane area and damage to neighbouring properties.

“This work will greatly reduce the risk of flooding to the west of Skipton, protecting existing homes and businesses, and will allow much needed employment land to be developed.

“Providing more employment land is crucial for the economic sustainability of Craven, to encourage growing businesses to remain in the district, and to enable new enterprises to move to the area, providing more jobs for future generations.”

The plans involve renovating an existing pond system off Gargrave Road, near Computershare. These ponds will be put back into use to create a water storage area. After flowing under Gargrave Road and into Aireville Park, an attenuation area will be created in a natural valley in the park to release water more slowly.

Finally, the planning application refers to the construction of a flood wall in a natural hollow adjacent to the Leeds Liverpool Canal which will also help strengthen the Canal bank itself.

Through the scheme the Council will carry out a programme of woodland management and tree planting which as well as allowing the scheme to proceed will encourage greater understory vegetation to grow, increase the diversity in the age of trees and allow light into the watercourse.

David Dickson, chair of YNYER LEP’s Infrastructure and Joint Assets Board, said: “We are delighted to support this £5m development and the flood alleviation measures will be the foundation for the success of the larger project.

“The York, North Yorkshire and East Riding Enterprise Partnership prioritise investments that will have a significant impact on the economic health, accessibility and connectivity for local communities.  We have a unique local focus, to sustain a healthy business community and maintain a growing economy across our region.”

Subject to the approval of the planning application the work is scheduled to commence in spring 2020.