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Upper Kent: Other Works

Burneside, Staveley, Ings and Upstream Measures

The Environment Agency is delivering a proposed Flood Risk Management Scheme to better protect homes and businesses from flooding in the Kent catchment, and improve the local environment and community amenities. Kendal is the first area to be delivered, followed by Burneside, Staveley, and Ings, and upstream measures including flood storage. In addition, Natural Flood Management measures are being integrated into the plans which aim to slow the flow of water and provide wider environmental benefits across the catchment.


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Other Works

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There are a number of other projects being delivered by other organisations that will provide some flood risk benefits. These projects can be varied in their nature and include environmental enhancement projects, improvements to infrastructure, conveyance and drainage.


River Restoration

The Environment Agency has made a commitment to undertake approximately 2km of river improvements within the Kent catchment.

Funded through the European Union’s LIFE Programme, The R4ever Kent is a £4.5 million project that aims to Restore and Revitalise to ensure that the River Kent and its species are more resilient to climate change.  Set to run over five years from October 2021 to January 2027, partner organisations include Natural England, the Environment Agency, Freshwater Biological Association and South Cumbria Rivers Trust.  As a partner of the EU LIFE R4ever Kent Project, the scheme will deliver 1.9km of river restoration within the Kent Catchment which will provide suitable habitats for fish, freshwater pearl mussels and white clawed crayfish. For further information please click here.

For more information please visit the project website here.




Ford Bridge Replacement Burneside

The Environment Agency worked closely with Cumbria County Council to construct a new replacement for Ford Bridge which opened in 2019. Cumbria County Council invested £1.5m in the project, as part of its Infrastructure Recovery Programme, to replace the bridge which was damaged by Storm Desmond in 2015, and subsequently closed in 2017 for public safety.

The bridge has been designed to be more resilient to future extreme weather events and will allow more water to flow under the bridge which will help reduce the overall impact of any future flood events.

For more information and to view photographs of the new bridge, visit the Cumbria County Council website here.

Ford Bridge – damage during Storm Desmond 2015


Ford Bridge Improvement



Staveley Bridge Replacement

Cumbria County Council invested around £500,000 as part of its Infrastructure Recovery Programme into the Staveley Bridge replacement project which was completed in May 2017. Old Gowan Bridge was severely damaged by Storm Desmond in 2015 and the new structure was designed to increase resilience and increase the volume of water able to flow beneath it.

For more information, visit the Cumbria County Council website here.

Before: Gowan Bridge, Staveley – photo provided by Cumbria County Council


After: Gowan Bridge – photo provided by Cumbria County Council


After: Gowan Bridge – photo provided by Cumbria County Council



Burneside Wall Repair

Remedial works have been carried out to repair the flood defence wall running along the boundary of the Bridge Street car park, adjacent to the James Cropper Plc factory.  A structural inspection and monitoring process indicated that movement between two sections of the wall caused a crack to form.  As part of the works the team installed an expansion joint to account for any movement.

Burneside Wall Repair


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Bowston Weir Removal

South Cumbria Rivers Trust in collaboration with the Environment Agency and Natural England has successfully delivered a weir removal on the River Kent at Bowston, a location near Burneside in South Cumbria.  The weir removal forms part of a highly acclaimed Cumbria River Restoration programme, which aims to restore and improve our rivers for the benefit of people and wildlife.

The weir removal is significant due to the size and scale of the removal, with this being the largest weir removal within the country to happen during 2022. Since the removal, the river has already shown improvements in form and function and will continue to improve as a designated Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) and a Special Area of Conservation (SAC).

Find out more about this project: 2023 UK River Prize Finalist – Bowston Weir Removal – YouTube

Jeremy Wade, renowned fisherman visits Bowston and explains the importance of projects like this: Is River Monsters’ host Jeremy Wade removing dams to save salmon? – YouTube

The programme of works has been funded by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development.