PERTH and Kinross Council has begun excavating a large gravel bar from a bend in the River Ruchill as part of a series of accelerated flood alleviation measures to protect the village of Comrie where more than 100 homes were devastated in a deluge two weeks ago.
Scores of residents in the Camp Road , Barrack Road and Dalginross areas of the village had to be rescued from their homes after being trapped by rapidly rising flood waters as the River Ruchill, a tributary of the River Earn, burst its banks following a night of torrential rain.
It was the second flood to hit the village in four months. In August angry local residents blamed the community’s own flood defences for the floods which swept through the Perthshire village, damaging more than 30 homes.
The council has agreed to spend £1 million on a series of flood alleviation measures. A council spokeswoman said today: “The council is continuing to respond to the recent flooding incidents in Comrie.
“Perth and Kinross’s Roads Maintenance Partnership built temporary defences last week, including a temporary flood wall across Camp Road using large sandbags. The existing flood embankments have also been breached to divert flood water.Work has now started on the permanent flood alleviation measures.
“On Monday, following agreement with local landowners, SEPA and Tay Salmon Fisheries, work began to excavate the gravel bar from the bend in the Water of Ruchill and to remove fallen trees from the river bed and banks.
“Weather permitting, further preparations to form a new temporary access track will also be carried out from Wednesday, as will work to remove a substantial section of the 1960s flood embankments. This will then allow work to progress further on the permanent flood defences at the end of Camp Road. The temporary floodwall will be left in place until the permanent proposals for Camp Road are implemented.”
Councillor Alan Grant, the Depute Leader of the council, welcomed the progress of the flood mitigation measures. He said: “We recognise the concerns that the community in Comrie have about the potential for any future flooding incidents. Therefore, we have moved as quickly as possible to start work on the flood alleviation measures approved last week and I am pleased that good progress is being made. The support of our partner organisations to help us take these works forward is also very much appreciated.”