Barrier to help protect town centre and railway station from flooding

Photo from the opening of Forge Island canal barrierRotherham's

Rotherham Council and partners have officially opened a state-of-the-art canal barrier at Forge Island.

The barrier has added a new feature to the Rotherham skyline alongside the historic canal, lock and towpath.

It is a single phase of the Rotherham Renaissance Flood Alleviation Scheme, which will reduce the risk of flooding to the town centre, businesses and Rotherham Central railway station.

Construction work began on the barrier in August 2021. The barrier and associated works in this phase cost £4.45m and was funded by funding from the Levelling Up Fund, South Yorkshire Mayoral Combined Authority, European Regional Development Fund, Yorkshire Regional Flood and Coastal Committee Local Levy, and Network Rail.

The construction of the barrier required around 50 tonnes of steel reinforcements and 1,000 tonnes of concrete.

Rotherham Council’s cabinet member for transport and environment, Councillor Dominic Beck, said: “The new canal barrier at the Rotherham Lock is a fantastic focal point of the flood alleviation works and showcases all of the hard work done by our Flood Risk Team and partners during the project.

“The canal barrier has already become an iconic part of the Rotherham town centre skyline, and will provide reassurance and protection for countless residents who live and work alongside the River Don.

“The canal barrier is a great example of what the council and its partners are doing to prepare and act so that reduce risk to damage and to life from flooding in Rotherham.”

Rotherham Renaissance Flood Alleviation Scheme (RRFAS) will construct new flood defences along a five kilometre stretch of the River Don through the Templeborough, town centre and Parkgate areas of Rotherham. The project also includes a section of flood defences in Kilnhurst.

Darren Blank, project manager at Jackson Civil Engineering, said: “The project has been highly challenging while proving rewarding in all aspects of Civil Engineering and teamwork.

“It has highlighted the importance of early collaboration and relationships throughout the scheme stakeholders.

“We as the Principal Contractor have tried to place these principals at the forefront whilst relying on the skills and expertise of our site teams to deliver a high standard of delivery.

“We are immensely proud of the final product and the innovations and sustainable solutions we found along the way.”

Mark Duquemin, head of environmental management & sustainability for Pell Frischmann, added: “We are very pleased to see the canal barrier come to life, ready to protect the people and communities of Rotherham from flooding.

“It’s been rewarding working on the design and supporting the construction of this iconic structure with our design partners KGAL, providing mechanical & electrical services for the flood gate, and Ecus, providing landscape architecture services.”

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