Brighouse Flood Alleviation Scheme

Briefing from the Environment Agency

Commencement of investigative work 

As part of our appraisal work to develop a Flood Alleviation Scheme for Brighouse, we will shortly be undertaking investigative work along the River Calder and Clifton Beck.  This data collection will be carried out by our contracting partner VolkerStevin, Boskalis Westminster and SNC-Lavalin’s Atkins (VBA) and will involve site/ground investigations and conditional assessments of existing flood defence structures.  The work will commence at the end of May and be complete by the end of August.  

The nature of the activities will be largely contained to the river channel and disruption will be minimal, although we will require access via some residential and business properties and will be liaising directly with anyone affected.  Part of the work will also be carried out in the beck within Wellholme Park.  

The collection of this essential data will allow us to continue to progress design options for the overall scheme at Brighouse.  



The Boxing Day flood in 2015 was one of the most extensive Brighouse has ever seen.  Overtopping of the River Calder and Clifton Beck was experienced along with surface water flooding issues.  The areas affected included numerous businesses within the Armytage Industrial Estate around Rastrick Bridge, Brighouse Bridge and residential properties along River Street.  


Where are we with the overall scheme?   

Following the Initial Assessment, the Strategic Outline Case (SOC) was approved in February this year.  The business case allows us to develop the final scheme design and secure the necessary funding to enable construction to commence.   


What will the scheme be?  

The exact nature of the scheme continues to be developed and is dependent on gaining the necessary funding, however, we are looking to reduce the risk of flooding from the Calder, Clifton Beck, the Calder and Hebble Navigation and surface water flooding by undertaking the following mitigation measures (but not limited to):  

River Calder:  

- Repair and refurbish the flood embankments adjacent to Armytage Road where required - Replace / raise the existing formal flood walls that have become life expired adjacent to Atlas Mill Road - Build new defences to replace existing informal riverside walls and buildings where they are insufficient to contain flood water  
Clifton Beck:  

- Create a flood storage area in Wellholme Park - Raise walls adjacent to Clifton Beck to contain higher flows  

Calder and Hebble Navigation:  

- Seek to minimise the potential for excess flow from the Calder to get into the canal and then cause flooding to adjacent properties.   

Surface Water:  

-  Address surface water issues in Brighouse town centre where possible.  


When can we expect the scheme to be built?  

Over the course of 2018 we will:  

- Undertake site investigations, surveys, environmental assessments and consultations

- Carry out assessments of existing assets - Undertake modelling to understand fluvial and surface water flows in the town

- Fully assess the range of options and identify the preferred option

- Continue to explore funding opportunities   

The delivery of the Brighouse FAS is reliant on external funding contributions and there is currently a significant funding gap which we will continue to address during the next stage of the project as highlighted above.  

In 2019 we intend to:  

- Gain approval for the Full Business Case (FBC)

- Finalise the detailed designs for the scheme

- Seek and obtain planning permissions  

Assuming we can secure sufficient partnership contributions towards the scheme, we aim to commence construction in 2019 with completion in 2020.    

If you have questions about the work, please email