PRELIMINARY work as part of a wider scheme to reduce the flood risk in Upton-upon-Severn is to take place from next week.
Worcestershire County Council’s contractors will be undertaking investigation works along the A4104, a key road in and out of the town, ahead of the major project to raise the road later this year.
The works, which include digging trial holes to confirm the ground conditions, will take place from Monday to Sunday, August 6.
This coincides with the tenth anniversary of the 2007 floods when the county was hit by some of the worst floods in memory.
Coun Alan Amos, cabinet member with responsibility for highways, said: “The floods in 2007 caused untold damage to homes and businesses, as well as to the highways and transport networks.
“Local residents have wanted this for some time and it will help keep the town open for business which is what everyone wants.
“We will ensure that disruption throughout the scheme is kept to a minimum and we will continue to speak to residents and businesses so they know exactly what is happening and when.”
More than 4,700 homes and business were impacted by the 2007 floods and the damage to Worcestershire’s economy was also considerable.
The disruption to highways and transport as well as damage to infrastructure brought the repair costs up to millions of pounds.
Since then, the county council has invested £16million into flood risk management and drainage improvements, implemented hundreds of highway drainage schemes and worked with communities to help develop their flood resilience.
Coun Tony Miller, cabinet member with responsibility for the environment, said: “So much has been done across Worcestershire since the devastating floods of 2007, benefitting homes and businesses.
“Nothing can fully eradicate the chances of flooding but this scheme will help to reduce the risk in Upton by a considerable amount.
“The start of these works is good news for the people of Upton who were so badly affected in 2007 and then again in 2014.”
The main bulk of the work in Upton is due to start in the Autumn.
The primary purpose of the scheme, which is expected to be completed in Spring 2018, is to reduce the likelihood of the A4104 being closed in the future due to flooding.
In 2007, Upton was so badly hit that it was effectively reduced to an island.
More recently in 2014, the A4104 had to be closed for several days due to flooding and the only way to access the town was by boat or army truck.
The scheme, which is being funded mainly by the Worcestershire Local Enterprise Partnership, is part of a wider project to reduce the flood risk on key sections of the highway network to keep residents and businesses moving.
It is also the latest of several hundred flood alleviation and drainage schemes implemented by the county council since 2007.
As of Monday, traffic lights will be in operation during the first few days of the works but they will only be in place during off-peak hours to minimise disruption.
Gary Woodman, chief executive of WLEP, concluded: “We are delighted that work is now underway on the flood prevention scheme in Upton.
“We are investing a total of £4million of Government’s Growth Deal funds into tackling flood hot-spots across the county, helping to reduce traffic congestion and the adverse economic impact of flooding across Worcestershire.”
For more information on how to check a property’s flood risk and how to manage that risk can be found at www.worcestershire.gov.uk/flooding.