Watford's MP, Richard Harrington, quizzes Secretary of State for Communities , Eric Pickles, over Watford flooding

Watford Observer: Mr Pickles agreed to take a personal interest in the River Colne and what actions are taken in Watford. Mr Pickles agreed to take a personal interest in the River Colne and what actions are taken in Watford.

The Secretary of State for Communities has said he will look into what can be done to prevent flooding in Watford after the River Colne burst its banks last week.

Eric Pickles’ comments come after he was questioned by Watford’s MP Richard Harrington in Parliament on Monday.

Mr Harrington asked the government minster: "What plans do the Government have to provide an assessment of local authorities’ plans for flood prevention in the years to come, particularly asking Hertfordshire what plans it has to stop the River Colne flooding and causing disruption to my constituents?"

Mr Pickles agreed to take a personal interest in the River Colne and what actions are taken in the town.

Following days of torrential rain across the county last week, roads were left flooded and residents raced to save their properties from the encroaching water.

Mr Harrington said he believes there are things which could be done to manage the situation better, such as dredging the River Colne more frequently, clearing away drains quickly when they become blocked and improving communication between residents and local authorities.

Comments (24)

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3:34pm Wed 12 Feb 14

Andrew1963 says...

one option wouyld be stop building houses on open space within the valley side of the colne, thus reducing run off that reduces the rivers ability to take water from further up the river course. like for example farm terrace allotments
one option wouyld be stop building houses on open space within the valley side of the colne, thus reducing run off that reduces the rivers ability to take water from further up the river course. like for example farm terrace allotments Andrew1963

4:01pm Wed 12 Feb 14

TRT says...

The Colne at Oxhey Park was once much wider, deeper and used by boaters. It is very silted up, but that provides quite a good habitat for a wide range of aquatic birds. There are, as yet, no details of the proposed new road's construction, but it will have to cross the old mill stream arm of the river. Another thought that crossed my mind was the old Victorian reservoirs around the place, like at Paddock Road and the one that used to be near the railway line in Bushey, now demolished and built on. They were part of a network of elevated storage tanks that were filled by massive steam driven pumps, some of which still are operational. Are they so far gone as to be utterly unusable even with repairs?
The Colne at Oxhey Park was once much wider, deeper and used by boaters. It is very silted up, but that provides quite a good habitat for a wide range of aquatic birds. There are, as yet, no details of the proposed new road's construction, but it will have to cross the old mill stream arm of the river. Another thought that crossed my mind was the old Victorian reservoirs around the place, like at Paddock Road and the one that used to be near the railway line in Bushey, now demolished and built on. They were part of a network of elevated storage tanks that were filled by massive steam driven pumps, some of which still are operational. Are they so far gone as to be utterly unusable even with repairs? TRT

6:12pm Wed 12 Feb 14

#UKMum says...

Richard Harrington questioned Eric Pickles about Watford flooding? Eric Pickles is backing WBC to build a tarmac carpark on Farm Terrace Allotments plus housing and Richard Harrington has always been fully behind this West Watford Housing Campus which was supposed to include a hospital rebuild but which now looks like just more urbanisation. Harrington cares about the Watford floods? Not very likely - Harrington lives elsewhere - just climbing aboard the latest photo-op bandwagon.
Richard Harrington questioned Eric Pickles about Watford flooding? Eric Pickles is backing WBC to build a tarmac carpark on Farm Terrace Allotments plus housing and Richard Harrington has always been fully behind this West Watford Housing Campus which was supposed to include a hospital rebuild but which now looks like just more urbanisation. Harrington cares about the Watford floods? Not very likely - Harrington lives elsewhere - just climbing aboard the latest photo-op bandwagon. #UKMum

6:51pm Wed 12 Feb 14

garry.armstrong232@btinternet.com says...

please dredge the river colne i remember playing in it when was a kid an now it dirty got rubbish in it so please mr pickles please dredge
please dredge the river colne i remember playing in it when was a kid an now it dirty got rubbish in it so please mr pickles please dredge garry.armstrong232@btinternet.com

7:27pm Wed 12 Feb 14

TRT says...

garry.armstrong232@b
tinternet.com
wrote:
please dredge the river colne i remember playing in it when was a kid an now it dirty got rubbish in it so please mr pickles please dredge
At selected sites, perhaps, but the old authorities that are now the Environment Agency, have done a lot of work on modifying the river bed to encourage the return of fish stocks and plant life. They could, however, construct lakes with terraced walks and rest spots at places like Waterfields / Timms Meadow, Oxhey Park, Riverside, that are designed to flood with much greater capacity than they have at present as simple plains, and to hold volumes of water as flood levels recede, releasing it slowly to prevent further downstream surge flooding.
[quote][p][bold]garry.armstrong232@b tinternet.com[/bold] wrote: please dredge the river colne i remember playing in it when was a kid an now it dirty got rubbish in it so please mr pickles please dredge[/p][/quote]At selected sites, perhaps, but the old authorities that are now the Environment Agency, have done a lot of work on modifying the river bed to encourage the return of fish stocks and plant life. They could, however, construct lakes with terraced walks and rest spots at places like Waterfields / Timms Meadow, Oxhey Park, Riverside, that are designed to flood with much greater capacity than they have at present as simple plains, and to hold volumes of water as flood levels recede, releasing it slowly to prevent further downstream surge flooding. TRT

8:17pm Wed 12 Feb 14

dontknowynot says...

We could improve the flow and pump the water down stream maybe do some work on the banks that way all the flooding will be someone elses problem
We could improve the flow and pump the water down stream maybe do some work on the banks that way all the flooding will be someone elses problem dontknowynot

9:12pm Wed 12 Feb 14

TRT says...

Wonder how much it would have cost to prevent or lessen the effect of this flooding compared to the cost of the Parade's vanity fair, and the relative economic impact of both schemes?
Wonder how much it would have cost to prevent or lessen the effect of this flooding compared to the cost of the Parade's vanity fair, and the relative economic impact of both schemes? TRT

9:32pm Wed 12 Feb 14

dontknowynot says...

TRT wrote:
Wonder how much it would have cost to prevent or lessen the effect of this flooding compared to the cost of the Parade's vanity fair, and the relative economic impact of both schemes?
I am sure a scheme could be devised for a modest amount and partners sought to share the benefit and cost of implemention
[quote][p][bold]TRT[/bold] wrote: Wonder how much it would have cost to prevent or lessen the effect of this flooding compared to the cost of the Parade's vanity fair, and the relative economic impact of both schemes?[/p][/quote]I am sure a scheme could be devised for a modest amount and partners sought to share the benefit and cost of implemention dontknowynot

10:17pm Wed 12 Feb 14

Su Murray says...

TRT wrote:
Wonder how much it would have cost to prevent or lessen the effect of this flooding compared to the cost of the Parade's vanity fair, and the relative economic impact of both schemes?
As I understand it, the money being spent on the Vanity Project, has to be spent on improving the area for locals and can't be used for things that are covered by our Council tax. I can't see any reason why it couldn't have been spent in the way you suggest. It would be interesting if our local council representatives and/or MP, could address that question.

Equally, it would be interesting if they would address the question regarding what impact building on the flood plain will have.
[quote][p][bold]TRT[/bold] wrote: Wonder how much it would have cost to prevent or lessen the effect of this flooding compared to the cost of the Parade's vanity fair, and the relative economic impact of both schemes?[/p][/quote]As I understand it, the money being spent on the Vanity Project, has to be spent on improving the area for locals and can't be used for things that are covered by our Council tax. I can't see any reason why it couldn't have been spent in the way you suggest. It would be interesting if our local council representatives and/or MP, could address that question. Equally, it would be interesting if they would address the question regarding what impact building on the flood plain will have. Su Murray

10:24pm Wed 12 Feb 14

Su Murray says...

#UKMum wrote:
Richard Harrington questioned Eric Pickles about Watford flooding? Eric Pickles is backing WBC to build a tarmac carpark on Farm Terrace Allotments plus housing and Richard Harrington has always been fully behind this West Watford Housing Campus which was supposed to include a hospital rebuild but which now looks like just more urbanisation. Harrington cares about the Watford floods? Not very likely - Harrington lives elsewhere - just climbing aboard the latest photo-op bandwagon.
He may or may not care about the floods. He no doubt cares very much about every potential vote in a marginal constituency now there is less than 18 months until the next General Election.
[quote][p][bold]#UKMum[/bold] wrote: Richard Harrington questioned Eric Pickles about Watford flooding? Eric Pickles is backing WBC to build a tarmac carpark on Farm Terrace Allotments plus housing and Richard Harrington has always been fully behind this West Watford Housing Campus which was supposed to include a hospital rebuild but which now looks like just more urbanisation. Harrington cares about the Watford floods? Not very likely - Harrington lives elsewhere - just climbing aboard the latest photo-op bandwagon.[/p][/quote]He may or may not care about the floods. He no doubt cares very much about every potential vote in a marginal constituency now there is less than 18 months until the next General Election. Su Murray

11:58pm Wed 12 Feb 14

Andrew1963 says...

TRT wrote:
The Colne at Oxhey Park was once much wider, deeper and used by boaters. It is very silted up, but that provides quite a good habitat for a wide range of aquatic birds. There are, as yet, no details of the proposed new road's construction, but it will have to cross the old mill stream arm of the river. Another thought that crossed my mind was the old Victorian reservoirs around the place, like at Paddock Road and the one that used to be near the railway line in Bushey, now demolished and built on. They were part of a network of elevated storage tanks that were filled by massive steam driven pumps, some of which still are operational. Are they so far gone as to be utterly unusable even with repairs?
The railway reservoirs that were on the site of Bromet school have completely gone. Not sure of status of Paddock reservoir, but it's twin at Merry Hill is still operational. Both were built by Watford council to store water pumped from the Watford Fields artesian well. Basically you pumped ground water up the hill and used gravity to provide the pressure to supply Watford with tap water. The river clone is now basically a drain. So much ground water is abstracted the natural springs that fed it and the Ver dry up by late May. The colne basically only flows in summer due to Blackbirds farm water treatment centre. We have a river only as a consequence of treating sewerage. The flow through Watford is also heavily dependent on the operator of millers rights at Hampermill. If they open their sluice the river drops dramatically in spring and summer. This years floods may impact the health campus with even more land needed to provide rain water flood ponds. That requirement alone may make the scheme unfeasible.
[quote][p][bold]TRT[/bold] wrote: The Colne at Oxhey Park was once much wider, deeper and used by boaters. It is very silted up, but that provides quite a good habitat for a wide range of aquatic birds. There are, as yet, no details of the proposed new road's construction, but it will have to cross the old mill stream arm of the river. Another thought that crossed my mind was the old Victorian reservoirs around the place, like at Paddock Road and the one that used to be near the railway line in Bushey, now demolished and built on. They were part of a network of elevated storage tanks that were filled by massive steam driven pumps, some of which still are operational. Are they so far gone as to be utterly unusable even with repairs?[/p][/quote]The railway reservoirs that were on the site of Bromet school have completely gone. Not sure of status of Paddock reservoir, but it's twin at Merry Hill is still operational. Both were built by Watford council to store water pumped from the Watford Fields artesian well. Basically you pumped ground water up the hill and used gravity to provide the pressure to supply Watford with tap water. The river clone is now basically a drain. So much ground water is abstracted the natural springs that fed it and the Ver dry up by late May. The colne basically only flows in summer due to Blackbirds farm water treatment centre. We have a river only as a consequence of treating sewerage. The flow through Watford is also heavily dependent on the operator of millers rights at Hampermill. If they open their sluice the river drops dramatically in spring and summer. This years floods may impact the health campus with even more land needed to provide rain water flood ponds. That requirement alone may make the scheme unfeasible. Andrew1963

2:13am Thu 13 Feb 14

John Dowdle says...

Timms Water Meadow referred to above on Water Lane now has a hotel built on it so no proper river water runoff facility there any more.
Another possibility I have asked for for years is that they build up the height of the river banks. Watford Council then seemed more concerned about providing habitat for voles than protecting local residents' homes.
If we can spend well in excess of £4 million on a pond why can we not spend a similar amount on protecting Watford properties from the river?
The impact of the wealth campus on all of this is really open to question.
Timms Water Meadow referred to above on Water Lane now has a hotel built on it so no proper river water runoff facility there any more. Another possibility I have asked for for years is that they build up the height of the river banks. Watford Council then seemed more concerned about providing habitat for voles than protecting local residents' homes. If we can spend well in excess of £4 million on a pond why can we not spend a similar amount on protecting Watford properties from the river? The impact of the wealth campus on all of this is really open to question. John Dowdle

7:11am Thu 13 Feb 14

Cuetip says...

TRT wrote:
garry.armstrong232@b

tinternet.com
wrote:
please dredge the river colne i remember playing in it when was a kid an now it dirty got rubbish in it so please mr pickles please dredge
At selected sites, perhaps, but the old authorities that are now the Environment Agency, have done a lot of work on modifying the river bed to encourage the return of fish stocks and plant life. They could, however, construct lakes with terraced walks and rest spots at places like Waterfields / Timms Meadow, Oxhey Park, Riverside, that are designed to flood with much greater capacity than they have at present as simple plains, and to hold volumes of water as flood levels recede, releasing it slowly to prevent further downstream surge flooding.
Dredging work needs to be monitored by someone who uses some common sense.
Some years ago the River Gade - a chalk river - was dredged but the silt was placed on the wrong bank and the river was widened which slowed its flow. A healthy living river needs a strong flow to 'clean' it, increases oxygen levels and allows the river to 'flush' itself.
[quote][p][bold]TRT[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]garry.armstrong232@b tinternet.com[/bold] wrote: please dredge the river colne i remember playing in it when was a kid an now it dirty got rubbish in it so please mr pickles please dredge[/p][/quote]At selected sites, perhaps, but the old authorities that are now the Environment Agency, have done a lot of work on modifying the river bed to encourage the return of fish stocks and plant life. They could, however, construct lakes with terraced walks and rest spots at places like Waterfields / Timms Meadow, Oxhey Park, Riverside, that are designed to flood with much greater capacity than they have at present as simple plains, and to hold volumes of water as flood levels recede, releasing it slowly to prevent further downstream surge flooding.[/p][/quote]Dredging work needs to be monitored by someone who uses some common sense. Some years ago the River Gade - a chalk river - was dredged but the silt was placed on the wrong bank and the river was widened which slowed its flow. A healthy living river needs a strong flow to 'clean' it, increases oxygen levels and allows the river to 'flush' itself. Cuetip

8:06am Thu 13 Feb 14

dontknowynot says...

Andrew1963 wrote:
TRT wrote:
The Colne at Oxhey Park was once much wider, deeper and used by boaters. It is very silted up, but that provides quite a good habitat for a wide range of aquatic birds. There are, as yet, no details of the proposed new road's construction, but it will have to cross the old mill stream arm of the river. Another thought that crossed my mind was the old Victorian reservoirs around the place, like at Paddock Road and the one that used to be near the railway line in Bushey, now demolished and built on. They were part of a network of elevated storage tanks that were filled by massive steam driven pumps, some of which still are operational. Are they so far gone as to be utterly unusable even with repairs?
The railway reservoirs that were on the site of Bromet school have completely gone. Not sure of status of Paddock reservoir, but it's twin at Merry Hill is still operational. Both were built by Watford council to store water pumped from the Watford Fields artesian well. Basically you pumped ground water up the hill and used gravity to provide the pressure to supply Watford with tap water. The river clone is now basically a drain. So much ground water is abstracted the natural springs that fed it and the Ver dry up by late May. The colne basically only flows in summer due to Blackbirds farm water treatment centre. We have a river only as a consequence of treating sewerage. The flow through Watford is also heavily dependent on the operator of millers rights at Hampermill. If they open their sluice the river drops dramatically in spring and summer. This years floods may impact the health campus with even more land needed to provide rain water flood ponds. That requirement alone may make the scheme unfeasible.
I think that In some places they use deep bores that they pump water into
[quote][p][bold]Andrew1963[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]TRT[/bold] wrote: The Colne at Oxhey Park was once much wider, deeper and used by boaters. It is very silted up, but that provides quite a good habitat for a wide range of aquatic birds. There are, as yet, no details of the proposed new road's construction, but it will have to cross the old mill stream arm of the river. Another thought that crossed my mind was the old Victorian reservoirs around the place, like at Paddock Road and the one that used to be near the railway line in Bushey, now demolished and built on. They were part of a network of elevated storage tanks that were filled by massive steam driven pumps, some of which still are operational. Are they so far gone as to be utterly unusable even with repairs?[/p][/quote]The railway reservoirs that were on the site of Bromet school have completely gone. Not sure of status of Paddock reservoir, but it's twin at Merry Hill is still operational. Both were built by Watford council to store water pumped from the Watford Fields artesian well. Basically you pumped ground water up the hill and used gravity to provide the pressure to supply Watford with tap water. The river clone is now basically a drain. So much ground water is abstracted the natural springs that fed it and the Ver dry up by late May. The colne basically only flows in summer due to Blackbirds farm water treatment centre. We have a river only as a consequence of treating sewerage. The flow through Watford is also heavily dependent on the operator of millers rights at Hampermill. If they open their sluice the river drops dramatically in spring and summer. This years floods may impact the health campus with even more land needed to provide rain water flood ponds. That requirement alone may make the scheme unfeasible.[/p][/quote]I think that In some places they use deep bores that they pump water into dontknowynot

8:53am Thu 13 Feb 14

TRT says...

dontknowynot wrote:
Andrew1963 wrote:
TRT wrote:
The Colne at Oxhey Park was once much wider, deeper and used by boaters. It is very silted up, but that provides quite a good habitat for a wide range of aquatic birds. There are, as yet, no details of the proposed new road's construction, but it will have to cross the old mill stream arm of the river. Another thought that crossed my mind was the old Victorian reservoirs around the place, like at Paddock Road and the one that used to be near the railway line in Bushey, now demolished and built on. They were part of a network of elevated storage tanks that were filled by massive steam driven pumps, some of which still are operational. Are they so far gone as to be utterly unusable even with repairs?
The railway reservoirs that were on the site of Bromet school have completely gone. Not sure of status of Paddock reservoir, but it's twin at Merry Hill is still operational. Both were built by Watford council to store water pumped from the Watford Fields artesian well. Basically you pumped ground water up the hill and used gravity to provide the pressure to supply Watford with tap water. The river clone is now basically a drain. So much ground water is abstracted the natural springs that fed it and the Ver dry up by late May. The colne basically only flows in summer due to Blackbirds farm water treatment centre. We have a river only as a consequence of treating sewerage. The flow through Watford is also heavily dependent on the operator of millers rights at Hampermill. If they open their sluice the river drops dramatically in spring and summer. This years floods may impact the health campus with even more land needed to provide rain water flood ponds. That requirement alone may make the scheme unfeasible.
I think that In some places they use deep bores that they pump water into
Yes. It's called fracking.
[quote][p][bold]dontknowynot[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Andrew1963[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]TRT[/bold] wrote: The Colne at Oxhey Park was once much wider, deeper and used by boaters. It is very silted up, but that provides quite a good habitat for a wide range of aquatic birds. There are, as yet, no details of the proposed new road's construction, but it will have to cross the old mill stream arm of the river. Another thought that crossed my mind was the old Victorian reservoirs around the place, like at Paddock Road and the one that used to be near the railway line in Bushey, now demolished and built on. They were part of a network of elevated storage tanks that were filled by massive steam driven pumps, some of which still are operational. Are they so far gone as to be utterly unusable even with repairs?[/p][/quote]The railway reservoirs that were on the site of Bromet school have completely gone. Not sure of status of Paddock reservoir, but it's twin at Merry Hill is still operational. Both were built by Watford council to store water pumped from the Watford Fields artesian well. Basically you pumped ground water up the hill and used gravity to provide the pressure to supply Watford with tap water. The river clone is now basically a drain. So much ground water is abstracted the natural springs that fed it and the Ver dry up by late May. The colne basically only flows in summer due to Blackbirds farm water treatment centre. We have a river only as a consequence of treating sewerage. The flow through Watford is also heavily dependent on the operator of millers rights at Hampermill. If they open their sluice the river drops dramatically in spring and summer. This years floods may impact the health campus with even more land needed to provide rain water flood ponds. That requirement alone may make the scheme unfeasible.[/p][/quote]I think that In some places they use deep bores that they pump water into[/p][/quote]Yes. It's called fracking. TRT

1:44pm Thu 13 Feb 14

G_Whiz says...

TRT wrote:
garry.armstrong232@b

tinternet.com
wrote:
please dredge the river colne i remember playing in it when was a kid an now it dirty got rubbish in it so please mr pickles please dredge
At selected sites, perhaps, but the old authorities that are now the Environment Agency, have done a lot of work on modifying the river bed to encourage the return of fish stocks and plant life. They could, however, construct lakes with terraced walks and rest spots at places like Waterfields / Timms Meadow, Oxhey Park, Riverside, that are designed to flood with much greater capacity than they have at present as simple plains, and to hold volumes of water as flood levels recede, releasing it slowly to prevent further downstream surge flooding.
We should of course save some ready for expected summer droughts.

Summers will keep gradually getting drier and winters wetter - we should prepare ourselves properly with LONG TERM thinking. For a change!

Never build on a flood plain - That is where the water needs to go.

build more reservoirs to preserve the water we get.

Why are these simple rules not being followed???

We've done the overpopulate, build everywhere thing - it hasn't worked!
[quote][p][bold]TRT[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]garry.armstrong232@b tinternet.com[/bold] wrote: please dredge the river colne i remember playing in it when was a kid an now it dirty got rubbish in it so please mr pickles please dredge[/p][/quote]At selected sites, perhaps, but the old authorities that are now the Environment Agency, have done a lot of work on modifying the river bed to encourage the return of fish stocks and plant life. They could, however, construct lakes with terraced walks and rest spots at places like Waterfields / Timms Meadow, Oxhey Park, Riverside, that are designed to flood with much greater capacity than they have at present as simple plains, and to hold volumes of water as flood levels recede, releasing it slowly to prevent further downstream surge flooding.[/p][/quote]We should of course save some ready for expected summer droughts. Summers will keep gradually getting drier and winters wetter - we should prepare ourselves properly with LONG TERM thinking. For a change! Never build on a flood plain - That is where the water needs to go. build more reservoirs to preserve the water we get. Why are these simple rules not being followed??? We've done the overpopulate, build everywhere thing - it hasn't worked! G_Whiz

2:13pm Thu 13 Feb 14

oldgold says...

Sometimes I fear that, throughout the UK, we can be guilty of proclaiming that my floods are wetter than your floods. I confess that I've been guilty of it, myself, when being macho about the 2007 Hull floods being far worse than any 'soft southerners' are experiencing.

I apologise for that. I know how horrid it is to have one's home (or school, or shop, or offices, or factory) inundated. Usually, it takes more than six months to restore a flooded property sufficiently to permit re-occupation.

However, climate change has arrived and it's what is affecting all of us, now. Not even the noble Lord Lawson will be able to continue to insist that the continuing episodes of 'extreme weather' are just unfortunate but unexceptional events. - Or maybe not, because his knowledge of pan-global physics appears to be negligible.

We shall have to attempt to alleviate future extreme weather events - or, at least, to alleviate their worst effects. This aim is not assisted by government ministers fighting like a pack of cats in a sack. Messrs Cameron, Clegg, Paterson, Pickles, Hammond, Vaizey, et al, are scurrying around, hither and thither (mostly in ever-decreasing circles), contributing nothing of value to either God or man.

Well, do you really think the blame-game approach is helpful, for either now or the future? And how do you feel about: 'Money is no object', one day, followed by: 'There'll be no more money', the next day? I suggest that the Treasury tail is wagging the Prime Ministerial puppy. Yes, Danny Alexander, it's you I'm talking about.

As to the Honourable Member for Watford... Well, words almost fail me. It has been alleged that it was Lord Ashcroft's off-shored money which helped win the seat. It's also been alleged that the Hon Mr H lives safe and dry in a very posh house in Totteridge, high above any flood plain. That, I\ think epitomises his allegiance to the good folk of Watford and district.
Sometimes I fear that, throughout the UK, we can be guilty of proclaiming that my floods are wetter than your floods. I confess that I've been guilty of it, myself, when being macho about the 2007 Hull floods being far worse than any 'soft southerners' are experiencing. I apologise for that. I know how horrid it is to have one's home (or school, or shop, or offices, or factory) inundated. Usually, it takes more than six months to restore a flooded property sufficiently to permit re-occupation. However, climate change has arrived and it's what is affecting all of us, now. Not even the noble Lord Lawson will be able to continue to insist that the continuing episodes of 'extreme weather' are just unfortunate but unexceptional events. - Or maybe not, because his knowledge of pan-global physics appears to be negligible. We shall have to attempt to alleviate future extreme weather events - or, at least, to alleviate their worst effects. This aim is not assisted by government ministers fighting like a pack of cats in a sack. Messrs Cameron, Clegg, Paterson, Pickles, Hammond, Vaizey, et al, are scurrying around, hither and thither (mostly in ever-decreasing circles), contributing nothing of value to either God or man. Well, do you really think the blame-game approach is helpful, for either now or the future? And how do you feel about: 'Money is no object', one day, followed by: 'There'll be no more money', the next day? I suggest that the Treasury tail is wagging the Prime Ministerial puppy. Yes, Danny Alexander, it's you I'm talking about. As to the Honourable Member for Watford... Well, words almost fail me. It has been alleged that it was Lord Ashcroft's off-shored money which helped win the seat. It's also been alleged that the Hon Mr H lives safe and dry in a very posh house in Totteridge, high above any flood plain. That, I\ think epitomises his allegiance to the good folk of Watford and district. oldgold

10:40pm Thu 13 Feb 14

John Dowdle says...

Concreting over the West Watford flood plain will clearly make matters very much worse. Is the Eric Pickles referred to in this article the same Eric Pickles who has agreed to the West Watford flood plain being concreted over so that Watford Football Club can have a nice new concrete car park on the site of the present allotments? Does his stance make any kind of sense?
Concreting over the West Watford flood plain will clearly make matters very much worse. Is the Eric Pickles referred to in this article the same Eric Pickles who has agreed to the West Watford flood plain being concreted over so that Watford Football Club can have a nice new concrete car park on the site of the present allotments? Does his stance make any kind of sense? John Dowdle

11:59pm Thu 13 Feb 14

Su Murray says...

John Dowdle wrote:
Concreting over the West Watford flood plain will clearly make matters very much worse. Is the Eric Pickles referred to in this article the same Eric Pickles who has agreed to the West Watford flood plain being concreted over so that Watford Football Club can have a nice new concrete car park on the site of the present allotments? Does his stance make any kind of sense?
Yep. The very same Eric Pickles that needed to buy a flat near Westminster because commuting 37 miles each day from Brentwood (less than 1 hour by train) was too much to be expected of him.

http://www.youtube.c
om/watch?v=6MrFV4c_s
VY

Also the same Eric Pickles that agreed JSA claimants should be prepared to take jobs involving three hours travel per day, or lose their benefit

Somehow, nothing Pickles says seems to make sense to me. Still, he's been pulled off the case now and while our climate change denying Secretary of State for the Environment Owen Paterson is recovering from the best timed detached retina for at least a century, Philip Hammond the Defence Secretary has stepped in to the breach and assured us that the PM didn't actually mean 'money is no object'. So presumably we aren't a 'wealthy country' as the PM told us and in fact, we are still just like Greece as Osborne has been telling us all along..........

Confused?

..http://www.youtube
.com/watch?v=0BHQT3O
mqtw
[quote][p][bold]John Dowdle[/bold] wrote: Concreting over the West Watford flood plain will clearly make matters very much worse. Is the Eric Pickles referred to in this article the same Eric Pickles who has agreed to the West Watford flood plain being concreted over so that Watford Football Club can have a nice new concrete car park on the site of the present allotments? Does his stance make any kind of sense?[/p][/quote]Yep. The very same Eric Pickles that needed to buy a flat near Westminster because commuting 37 miles each day from Brentwood (less than 1 hour by train) was too much to be expected of him. http://www.youtube.c om/watch?v=6MrFV4c_s VY Also the same Eric Pickles that agreed JSA claimants should be prepared to take jobs involving three hours travel per day, or lose their benefit Somehow, nothing Pickles says seems to make sense to me. Still, he's been pulled off the case now and while our climate change denying Secretary of State for the Environment Owen Paterson is recovering from the best timed detached retina for at least a century, Philip Hammond the Defence Secretary has stepped in to the breach and assured us that the PM didn't actually mean 'money is no object'. So presumably we aren't a 'wealthy country' as the PM told us and in fact, we are still just like Greece as Osborne has been telling us all along.......... Confused? ..http://www.youtube .com/watch?v=0BHQT3O mqtw Su Murray

12:05am Fri 14 Feb 14

Su Murray says...

Btw Pickles has form when it comes to disposing of 'greenery';

http://www.hazemagaz
ine.co.uk/eric-pickl
es-called-councillor
-little-****-in-fron
t-of-kids-then-storm
ed-off-for-a-curry
Btw Pickles has form when it comes to disposing of 'greenery'; http://www.hazemagaz ine.co.uk/eric-pickl es-called-councillor -little-****-in-fron t-of-kids-then-storm ed-off-for-a-curry Su Murray

4:15am Fri 14 Feb 14

John Dowdle says...

Apparently, there is an EU fund from which the UK government could receive financial assistance to ameliorate the effects of flooding. However, it seems they did not bother to apply to the fund and may now have left any possible application too late to benefit from the fund. What is that about - UKIP fear?
See http://www.reuters.c
om/article/2014/02/1
2/us-eu-britain-floo
ds-idUSBREA1B1KX2014
0212 for details.
Apparently, there is an EU fund from which the UK government could receive financial assistance to ameliorate the effects of flooding. However, it seems they did not bother to apply to the fund and may now have left any possible application too late to benefit from the fund. What is that about - UKIP fear? See http://www.reuters.c om/article/2014/02/1 2/us-eu-britain-floo ds-idUSBREA1B1KX2014 0212 for details. John Dowdle

8:38am Wed 19 Feb 14

sjtrebar says...

You have to be joking? Just who are you trying to fool Richard Harrington? ? You are the same Richard Harrington who completey backs the concreting over the centuries old, water absorbing allotments and the complete development on the very same flood plain you talk of here??
You have to be joking? Just who are you trying to fool Richard Harrington? ? You are the same Richard Harrington who completey backs the concreting over the centuries old, water absorbing allotments and the complete development on the very same flood plain you talk of here?? sjtrebar

9:48am Wed 19 Feb 14

dontknowynot says...

TRT wrote:
dontknowynot wrote:
Andrew1963 wrote:
TRT wrote:
The Colne at Oxhey Park was once much wider, deeper and used by boaters. It is very silted up, but that provides quite a good habitat for a wide range of aquatic birds. There are, as yet, no details of the proposed new road's construction, but it will have to cross the old mill stream arm of the river. Another thought that crossed my mind was the old Victorian reservoirs around the place, like at Paddock Road and the one that used to be near the railway line in Bushey, now demolished and built on. They were part of a network of elevated storage tanks that were filled by massive steam driven pumps, some of which still are operational. Are they so far gone as to be utterly unusable even with repairs?
The railway reservoirs that were on the site of Bromet school have completely gone. Not sure of status of Paddock reservoir, but it's twin at Merry Hill is still operational. Both were built by Watford council to store water pumped from the Watford Fields artesian well. Basically you pumped ground water up the hill and used gravity to provide the pressure to supply Watford with tap water. The river clone is now basically a drain. So much ground water is abstracted the natural springs that fed it and the Ver dry up by late May. The colne basically only flows in summer due to Blackbirds farm water treatment centre. We have a river only as a consequence of treating sewerage. The flow through Watford is also heavily dependent on the operator of millers rights at Hampermill. If they open their sluice the river drops dramatically in spring and summer. This years floods may impact the health campus with even more land needed to provide rain water flood ponds. That requirement alone may make the scheme unfeasible.
I think that In some places they use deep bores that they pump water into
Yes. It's called fracking.
No fracking is where you pump water and chemicals at very high pressure into rocks into permeable shale in order to fracture it and release gas that you extract.
Deep bore soakaways or pumping is where water is pumped to or channeled to a bore that allows the water to pass thro non permeable geology to permeable rock such as chalk.
We are about 200ft above sea level and if a bore hole was sunk at say Munden excess water could be allowed to drain into it from the Colne rather than flood Watford. It may be the geology is not suitable for such a solution, or that a different site would be better but this would be worth looking into no??
[quote][p][bold]TRT[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]dontknowynot[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Andrew1963[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]TRT[/bold] wrote: The Colne at Oxhey Park was once much wider, deeper and used by boaters. It is very silted up, but that provides quite a good habitat for a wide range of aquatic birds. There are, as yet, no details of the proposed new road's construction, but it will have to cross the old mill stream arm of the river. Another thought that crossed my mind was the old Victorian reservoirs around the place, like at Paddock Road and the one that used to be near the railway line in Bushey, now demolished and built on. They were part of a network of elevated storage tanks that were filled by massive steam driven pumps, some of which still are operational. Are they so far gone as to be utterly unusable even with repairs?[/p][/quote]The railway reservoirs that were on the site of Bromet school have completely gone. Not sure of status of Paddock reservoir, but it's twin at Merry Hill is still operational. Both were built by Watford council to store water pumped from the Watford Fields artesian well. Basically you pumped ground water up the hill and used gravity to provide the pressure to supply Watford with tap water. The river clone is now basically a drain. So much ground water is abstracted the natural springs that fed it and the Ver dry up by late May. The colne basically only flows in summer due to Blackbirds farm water treatment centre. We have a river only as a consequence of treating sewerage. The flow through Watford is also heavily dependent on the operator of millers rights at Hampermill. If they open their sluice the river drops dramatically in spring and summer. This years floods may impact the health campus with even more land needed to provide rain water flood ponds. That requirement alone may make the scheme unfeasible.[/p][/quote]I think that In some places they use deep bores that they pump water into[/p][/quote]Yes. It's called fracking.[/p][/quote]No fracking is where you pump water and chemicals at very high pressure into rocks into permeable shale in order to fracture it and release gas that you extract. Deep bore soakaways or pumping is where water is pumped to or channeled to a bore that allows the water to pass thro non permeable geology to permeable rock such as chalk. We are about 200ft above sea level and if a bore hole was sunk at say Munden excess water could be allowed to drain into it from the Colne rather than flood Watford. It may be the geology is not suitable for such a solution, or that a different site would be better but this would be worth looking into no?? dontknowynot

9:56am Wed 19 Feb 14

TRT says...

dontknowynot wrote:
TRT wrote:
dontknowynot wrote:
Andrew1963 wrote:
TRT wrote:
The Colne at Oxhey Park was once much wider, deeper and used by boaters. It is very silted up, but that provides quite a good habitat for a wide range of aquatic birds. There are, as yet, no details of the proposed new road's construction, but it will have to cross the old mill stream arm of the river. Another thought that crossed my mind was the old Victorian reservoirs around the place, like at Paddock Road and the one that used to be near the railway line in Bushey, now demolished and built on. They were part of a network of elevated storage tanks that were filled by massive steam driven pumps, some of which still are operational. Are they so far gone as to be utterly unusable even with repairs?
The railway reservoirs that were on the site of Bromet school have completely gone. Not sure of status of Paddock reservoir, but it's twin at Merry Hill is still operational. Both were built by Watford council to store water pumped from the Watford Fields artesian well. Basically you pumped ground water up the hill and used gravity to provide the pressure to supply Watford with tap water. The river clone is now basically a drain. So much ground water is abstracted the natural springs that fed it and the Ver dry up by late May. The colne basically only flows in summer due to Blackbirds farm water treatment centre. We have a river only as a consequence of treating sewerage. The flow through Watford is also heavily dependent on the operator of millers rights at Hampermill. If they open their sluice the river drops dramatically in spring and summer. This years floods may impact the health campus with even more land needed to provide rain water flood ponds. That requirement alone may make the scheme unfeasible.
I think that In some places they use deep bores that they pump water into
Yes. It's called fracking.
No fracking is where you pump water and chemicals at very high pressure into rocks into permeable shale in order to fracture it and release gas that you extract.
Deep bore soakaways or pumping is where water is pumped to or channeled to a bore that allows the water to pass thro non permeable geology to permeable rock such as chalk.
We are about 200ft above sea level and if a bore hole was sunk at say Munden excess water could be allowed to drain into it from the Colne rather than flood Watford. It may be the geology is not suitable for such a solution, or that a different site would be better but this would be worth looking into no??
No doubt natural fissures through the clay and chalk layers already exist. When water soaks through these, the acidic water flowing off the surface will eat away at the chalk leading to subterranean cavities capped by clay which will soften and weaken when saturated leading to... Sinkholes.
[quote][p][bold]dontknowynot[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]TRT[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]dontknowynot[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Andrew1963[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]TRT[/bold] wrote: The Colne at Oxhey Park was once much wider, deeper and used by boaters. It is very silted up, but that provides quite a good habitat for a wide range of aquatic birds. There are, as yet, no details of the proposed new road's construction, but it will have to cross the old mill stream arm of the river. Another thought that crossed my mind was the old Victorian reservoirs around the place, like at Paddock Road and the one that used to be near the railway line in Bushey, now demolished and built on. They were part of a network of elevated storage tanks that were filled by massive steam driven pumps, some of which still are operational. Are they so far gone as to be utterly unusable even with repairs?[/p][/quote]The railway reservoirs that were on the site of Bromet school have completely gone. Not sure of status of Paddock reservoir, but it's twin at Merry Hill is still operational. Both were built by Watford council to store water pumped from the Watford Fields artesian well. Basically you pumped ground water up the hill and used gravity to provide the pressure to supply Watford with tap water. The river clone is now basically a drain. So much ground water is abstracted the natural springs that fed it and the Ver dry up by late May. The colne basically only flows in summer due to Blackbirds farm water treatment centre. We have a river only as a consequence of treating sewerage. The flow through Watford is also heavily dependent on the operator of millers rights at Hampermill. If they open their sluice the river drops dramatically in spring and summer. This years floods may impact the health campus with even more land needed to provide rain water flood ponds. That requirement alone may make the scheme unfeasible.[/p][/quote]I think that In some places they use deep bores that they pump water into[/p][/quote]Yes. It's called fracking.[/p][/quote]No fracking is where you pump water and chemicals at very high pressure into rocks into permeable shale in order to fracture it and release gas that you extract. Deep bore soakaways or pumping is where water is pumped to or channeled to a bore that allows the water to pass thro non permeable geology to permeable rock such as chalk. We are about 200ft above sea level and if a bore hole was sunk at say Munden excess water could be allowed to drain into it from the Colne rather than flood Watford. It may be the geology is not suitable for such a solution, or that a different site would be better but this would be worth looking into no??[/p][/quote]No doubt natural fissures through the clay and chalk layers already exist. When water soaks through these, the acidic water flowing off the surface will eat away at the chalk leading to subterranean cavities capped by clay which will soften and weaken when saturated leading to... Sinkholes. TRT

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