£41m plan approved for Derby city centre’s flood defences

The flood at Museum of Making (credit: Derby Museums)

A £41m regeneration project focused on enhancing Derby city centre’s flood defences has been approved shortly after a severe storm caused disruptions to businesses and residents.

Councillors have given the green light to the next phase of extensive works to protect homes and businesses from flooding in Derby, resulting in significant changes to the city centre’s appearance.

This project is part of Derby City Council’s “Our City Our River” (OCOR) scheme.

Following planning permission approval obtained during a recent meeting on November 16, the officers overseeing the OCOR scheme are now planning for the next phase of activities.

These developments follow historic flood levels in the River Derwent in Derby recorded just weeks ago during the impact of Storm Babet.

The flooding led to the closure of the Museum of Making, which is still awaiting reopening and affected various businesses, including pubs like The Smithfield and Exeter Arms, as well as nearby homes.

The disturbance also impacted transportation, causing a partial closure of the A52 for a week, and Pentagon Island was completely submerged.

It is anticipated that this stage of the project will provide increased safeguarding for areas recently severely affected and protect an additional 670 existing properties.

The latest improvements will benefit various areas and venues, including Phoenix Street, Exeter Place, Meadow Road, Darwin Place, Derwent Street, and The Smithfield Public House.

The project involves demolishing four significant office blocks on Stuart Street, constructing a new flood wall from Causey Bridge to Derwent Bridge, and installing new floodgates at different locations.

In place of the demolished offices, new open public space will be created.

The offices slated for demolition are Peat House (Stuart Street), Epworth House (Stuart Street), Derwent Centre (Stuart Street), and Crompton House on Derwent Street.

Negotiations for the relocation of companies currently occupying these buildings are ongoing between the city council and the respective companies.