New wetlands and restored rivers in the parks of Barnet and Harrow will cut the risk of flooding, restore water quality and boost biodiversity under new plans.
Drone image: The Silk Stream winds its way through Silkstream Park and Montrose Playing Fields.
A North London resilience project has unveiled proposals to use nature-based solutions to tackle flood risk around the Silk Stream – a 2.5-mile tributary of the River Brent.
Cllr Alan Schneiderman, Chair of the Environment and Climate Change Committee, said: “We have already created a wetland area in Silkstream Park to alleviate flooding. That said, climate change is a real problem, and we will do everything we can to tackle it. We are proud to be doing our bit to improve our environment by taking part in this great project.”
Cllr Geof Cooke, who is part of the project board, said: “This is a great project and a step forward in the council’s action towards climate change and making our communities resilient to the extreme rainfall events.”
The Silk Stream Flood Resilience Innovation (SSRFI) project, led by Barnet and Harrow Councils, was selected as one of the 25 projects nationally in the Government’s Flood & Coastal Resilience Innovation Programme in 2021.
The business case for the £6m project has now been approved by the Environment Agency – a key milestone achievement for the first year of the six-year project.
The councils can now launch a new name for the project: “Action for Silk Stream – a project that will demonstrate innovation in managing flood risk and urban rivers.”
The project is a collaboration of Barnet Council, Harrow Council, Thames Water, Environment Agency, Metis (flood risk consultants), Lumby Consultancy (Evaluation specialist) and environmental charity Thames21.
The project is expected to begin in Autumn 2023, with additional proposals to come as part of the environmental improvement programme.