All systems go for flood defences

The River Bain in Horncastle
The River Bain in Horncastle

Plans for Horncastle’s multi-million pound flood defence scheme are set to move a significant step closer, the News can reveal.

A multi-agency approach including the Environment Agency, the County Council, East Lindsey District Council, Horncastle Town Council and the Witham Drainage Board, will see an £8.1m defence scheme set up in the Bain Valley.

It will feature a ‘holding reservoir’ and a series of earth banks which will hold back flood water.

As well as benefitting Horncastle, the plan will protect vulnerable communities further down the Bain.

Town councillors were told last week that a planning application should be submitted ‘within weeks.”

Confirmation came from Horncastle district councillor Fiona Martin who has long campaigned for better flood defences.

She said negotiations with owners of land where the defences will be sited were ‘on going.’

Coun Martin added: “Everything is progressing well.

“From what I understand, a planning application will be going in very shortly and fingers crossed, the work will start very soon.”

Officials from the Environment Agency, who are heading the project, recently said they hoped initial work would start before the summer.

Councillors were also told work was underway to protect individual properties in Horncastle affected by flooding from the River Waring.

It is understood as many as 16 households will benefit.

Meanwhile, councillors heard East Lindsey District Council has promised to investigate complaints about pigeon droppings in the town.

At a meeting last month, several councillors said the pigeon mess was a blight on the town.

Coun Martin said ELDC has promised to ‘keep an eye’ on the problem.

Councillors had called on ELDC to stage a ‘deep clean’ in problem areas, including the Market Place.

However, they were told one of the problems was that as soon as the mess is cleared, it re-appears.

Councillors have already played down suggestions of a cull of the town’s pigeon population - or bringing in a hawk as a deterrent.

On other matters, councillors were told work could be undertaken to improve safety in St Mary’s Square.

Reports have suggested a lack of lighting and an uneven pavement has led to safety issues in the area.

It is understood the County Council will look to cut back some of the trees overlooking the square although they will need permission from property owners.