Webcam to prevent flooding a ‘godsend’ for Angmering

Web cameras monitoring water levels in Angmering to prevent flooding (photo submitted by Angmering Parish Council). SUS-160322-095121001
Web cameras monitoring water levels in Angmering to prevent flooding (photo submitted by Angmering Parish Council). SUS-160322-095121001

A webcam installed to prevent flooding has been hailed as a ‘godsend’ for Angmering.

The village centre was ‘completely flooded’ back in June 2012 as the culvert running under the village became overwhelmed with the quantity of water, and an emergency committee was formed by Angmering Parish Council to consider its options.

Working with the Environment Agency, the parish council applied for £3,863 from West Sussex County Council’s Operation Watershed fund for a webcam at the culvert grille at the foot of Weaver’s Hill.

The equipment, which was installed in December 2013, allows residents, the parish council, and the EA to monitor water levels on the website, and take action if any debris prevents water flowing freely through the culvert.

During heavy rain in February 2014 a heavy log blocked the culvert, but the EA removed it quickly after it was spotted on the webcam.

The parish council gave a presentation to WSCC’s Environmental and Community Services Select Committee earlier this month on the impact of Operation Watershed funding.

Sylvia Verrinder, vice chairman of Angmering Parish Council, said: “The whole scheme has been an absolute godsend for us.”

She explained that the equipment was being rolled out in other areas across the country and Angmering had been ‘at the forefront of that thanks to Operation Watershed’.

Following the flooding in 2012, the parish council had also taken a number of steps to protect the village hall from any future flooding, while Ham Manor Golf Club had engaged a contractor to de-silt the stretch of Black Ditch that runs through the course and to remove any debris.

The first phase of Operation Watershed saw community groups and parish councils bid for a share of £1.25m for projects to help alleviate flooding, and its second phase of £1.1m was set up.

A third tranche of £500,000 funding is set to be made available for 2016/17.

Graham Tyler, chairman of the select committee, said: “It’s a relatively small amount of money that can help a whole community.”

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