Sea wall meeting hears pump plans

Brian Farrington from Balfour Beatty and resident Harold Prosser at the community engagement event on the new sea defences.

Brian Farrington from Balfour Beatty and resident Harold Prosser at the community engagement event on the new sea defences.

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A sea defence scheme in Anchorsholme will help improve the area’s bathing waters as well as protecting homes from floods, a community meeting heard.

The meeting at Anchorsholme Methodist Church yesterday included a presentation by Blackpool Council, United Utilities and construction firm Balfour Beatty, during which United Utilities announced plans to replace the area’s pumping station and extend the outfall pipe further out at sea. It means the bathing waters will be less concentrated with flood water.

Steve Wang from United Utilities said: “This is all about us trying to reduce the number and volume of floods or storm water running into the North Sea.

“When there are floods, the rain water backs up and goes into the sea as untreated storm water, affected the bathing waters. If we take that water further out, the depth and distance of it entering the sea from the shore dilutes the impact it has.”

The United Utilities work is currently being considered by the Environment Agency.

If approved, it will be funded by Ofwat, and is separate to the £86m grant from the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) and the Environment Agency for the Rossall and Anchorsholme sea defence scheme.

Harold Prosser, 86, lives off Anchorsholme Lane, and said he was pleased he attended the afternoon meeting.

He said: “I wanted to find out what the flood defence scheme was all about, and they told us about the new pumping station. The work on the sea wall is long over due, it should have been done years ago.” Work will begin on the sea defence scheme next spring and should be completed by autumn 2015.

Community exhibitions will be held on November 21 at Anchorsholme Library from 10am to 7pm and at Cleveleys Library on November 25 from 9.30am to 5pm.