Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 18 December 2014

Flood risk at Twisel Bridge

The area around Twisel Bridge, Holywood could soon be flooded if immediate action isn’t taken, Alliance councillor Andrew Muir warns.

He claims he asked the Rivers Agency to remove |the large tree trunks in the river near Twisel Bridge in late September. “They refused to move the tree trunks, stating they would only initiate action to ensure removal if there was ‘risk of a significant increase |of flooding’.”

“The tree trunks have now moved as a result of the recent heavy rainfall and are very near the entrance to the culvert. If they aren’t immediately removed I fear that they will soon block the culvert with many houses in the nearby area flooded.”

Cllr Muir added, “I have asked the Rivers Agency to ensure the immediate removal of the tree trunks before many houses in Holywood are submerged in flood water. The time for action is now.”

A DARD spokesperson said that because the watercourse was not designated, Rivers Agency was not empowered to maintain it. “Such responsibilities rest with the riparian occupiers of the land it flows through or forms a boundary to. Rivers Agency does however have powers to enforce maintenance on undesignated watercourses where failure to do so presents a potential risk of flooding.”

They said they would remind the riparian occupiers of their responsibilities.

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