A river runs through it

EXPERTS today suggested changing the course of the Rivers Alde and Ore, or putting a barrier in place, to try to reduce the increasing risk of flooding.

EXPERTS today suggested changing the course of the Rivers Alde and Ore, or putting a barrier in place, to try to reduce the increasing risk of flooding.

Roadshows will take place early in the New Year to show residents short-listed options for dealing with the potential flooding problems and managing of the estuary over the next 100 years.

The Environment Agency said predicted sea level rises - which will send increasing amount of water into the rivers - needed to be taken into account as well as protecting the wildlife and habitat the estuary provides.

The estuary stretches from its mouth at Shingle Street upriver to Snape. The condition of many of its flood embankments is currently deteriorating, partly due to erosion of the salt marsh.


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Studies have also examined the impact on the estuary of a breach occurring on the narrow neck of land between Aldeburgh and Orfordness. This neck of land has flood defences on both sides.

Among the short-listed options are the creation of a bypass channel at the top corner of Sudbourne Marshes, which would reduce water speeds and erosion around Slaughden Bend but increase erosion elsewhere.

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Another idea being examined is a flood barrier to protect areas upstream of where the barrier would be put during storms or sea surges.

Experts have also looked at a number of possibilities for changing the course of the rivers, but while there would be some benefits in realigning the river, the interference with the natural flow would cause other problems.

Work with residents on the study began in 2003 and there will be an opportunity to see all the options considered since then, including those proposed to be taken forward for detailed evaluation, at the roadshows.

"We would encourage members of the public to have a look at the ideas and come along to the roadshows to discuss the options identified," said project manager Nigel Pask.

A computer model of the estuary will also be on display at the exhibitions on January 11 at Aldeburgh Church Hall and Thursday January 13 at The New Room, Orford Town Hall, both between 2pm and 7pm.

Details of the options can be seen at www.suffolkestuaries.co.uk

What do you think? Write in to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

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