The Wirral's watery future due to rising flood risk
As many Wirral residents headed towards the coast during the bank holiday weekend, whether it was to gaze at the spectacular views of North Wales from West Kirby, to visit the Life Boat Show in Hoylake or to soak up the Sunday sunshine in New Brighton, none of those activities could be possible without the Promenade.
The Promenade is a vital sea defence to many properties and roads right around the Wirral peninsula however, according to a report carried out by the Wirral Coastal Strategy, the Promenade is in need of major investment. The Wirral Coastal Strategy report highlighted the fact that there has been no major investment in sea defences surrounding the borough since 2001 apart from repairs which were made to the Marine Lake in West Kirby four years ago.
According to the report, an estimated £100 million must be raised by Wirral Borough Council to pay for essential repairs and maintenance as the flood risk has risen to a significant level for many parts of the peninsula including Meols Parade, home to many residential properties. The promenade along this part of the coast has suffered damage over the years due to a combination of climate change and lack of maintenance.
The report by the Wirral Coastal Strategy highlighted Meols Parade as an area where ‘immediate requirement’ to improve sea defences is vital along with the South Parade in West Kirby and Rock Park in Rock Ferry.
In related news, residents of Kinross Road in Wallasey experienced growing concern about the risk of flooding due to the felling of trees by Network Rail. The residents living below the embankment by Wallasey Village train station were horrified when they noticed the thinning of trackside trees which resulted in a loss of privacy, increased noise disturbance and a higher risk of flooding.
The trees were felled by Network Rail because they were deemed ‘potentially hazardous’ and following many meetings with residents a compromise has been reached. The compromise involves the replacement of trees that have to be removed by low shrubs and 70 laurel trees to enhance the environment and prevent any flood risks. Fencing will also be replaced to improve resident’s privacy when rail passengers exit the trains onto the platforms.
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