Published: Friday, 6th Mar 2020

The Environment Agency and partners are urging residents and businesses in Prestolee and Stoneclough, who may have been affected by the flooding, to attend a drop-in session on Wednesday 11th March.



The event comes after heavy and prolonged rainfall, as a result of Storm Ciara, caused flooding in areas around the River Irwell catchment.



Storm Ciara swept across the UK on Sunday 9th February and brought with it heavy rain and gusts of up to 97mph causing widespread flooding and major disruption on the transport network.


Extremely high and intense rainfall ranging between 40 and 80mm in 24 hours was seen across much of northern England with particularly severe impacts being in Greater Manchester, including communities such as Prestolee and Stoneclough, where 22 homes suffered flooding.


Through a combination of operating defences and assets, the Environment Agency were able to protect more than 12,000 properties and businesses and warn around 13,500 people across Greater Manchester in advance of Ciara’s arrival.

In the following days, Community Information Officers from the Agency also visited affected communities to help residents recover as quickly as possible.


The upcoming drop-in session, due to be held on 11th March at Holy Trinity Church, Prestolee, 1 Church Rd, Manchester M26 1HJ, will provide further advice for those who have been affected by localised flooding as well as guidance about how to protect yourself and your property against flooding incidents in the future.


People will also be able to find out about the Environment Agency’s flood warning service, how they can write their own flood plan and see how they can get involved in local volunteer work to improve the riverside environment and reduce flooding problems in their neighbourhoods.


The Environment Agency will hold the drop-in session from 3pm until 7.00pm, with support from Bolton Council and United Utilities. Staff from all attending organisations will be on hand to speak to anyone concerned about flooding and to provide leaflets and information on individual agency roles during an incident.


Nick Pearson, Senior Flood and Coastal Risk Management Advisor with the Environment Agency said: “Storm Ciara shows what can happen when huge amounts of rain fall in a very short time and it is vital that we listen to the people who have experienced flooding first hand and learn from their experiences.


“Keeping people safe and helping them to become more flood resilient in the future is our top priority and we are pleased to be able to hold this drop-in session, alongside our partners, to provide a one-stop-shop for residents to access the information and support they need. This drop-in session will provide a good opportunity to speak to different agencies, ask questions, raise concerns and find out about the support available to residents who have suffered from flooding.


“Once we are confident that the short term measures for flood recovery have been addressed and resolved, we will start to plan for the longer-term works to boost flood resilience within our communities. I would urge everyone in to the Prestolee and Stoneclough communities to come along on the 11th March learn more about our ongoing work.”


Since Storm Eva on Boxing Day 2015 the Environment Agency has been working to understand flood risk in Prestolee and Stoneclough and to develop measures that could be put in place to reduce that risk. As part of the Agency’s proposals, funding opportunities for a flood scheme continue be explored.


Environment Agency operational teams have continued to be very active within the area removing both debris and blockages on a consistent maintenance schedule as well as spraying invasive species in preparation for potential construction of future flood walls.