Homes in Warkworth will be protected from river and tidal flooding, thanks to a new Environment Agency flood defence scheme.
Preparatory work began this week in advance of the construction of a new flood wall that will protect 35 homes at The Butts area.
The project will also see the ground raised at the United Reformed Church car park, with a new gate at The Meadows and raised ground between the Old School House properties.
There will also be two new flood gates to allow vehicular access for grass cutting on the riverbank, as well as a ramp to allow wheelchair-friendly pedestrian access to the grassland.
The existing benches will be removed during the work, but will be reinstated on completion. The existing car park will remain. Some trees may have to be removed. These will be replanted elsewhere in conjunction with Warkworth Parish Council.
Terry Robson, asset performance officer at the Environment Agency, said: “Warkworth lies within the tidal limit of the River Coquet and as such is at risk from tidal and river flooding.
“The town has a potted history of flooding, including a major river flooding event in September 2008, a tidal event in December 2013, and a number of instances of minor tidal flooding to roads.
“Currently there are no formal flood defences in Warkworth, so these works will provide valuable protection against major rainfall and tidal flooding events in the future.”
The scheme will cost a total of £398,000. This will be paid for by Local Levy and Government Grant in Aid money. The project is expected to take around 16 weeks to complete.