Installing Sandbags 1600 900

In an area plagued by flooding problems, residents have made a determined effort to protect their homes. People living in Lumley Road, Emsworth, were joined by volunteers, including staff from Opus International Consultants (Opus), who spent the day building flood defences with hundreds of sandbags.

In Dec 2013, residents were left devastated when the banks of the River Ems broke and their homes flooded. Opus is part of the Emsworth Flood Forum (Hampshire) and had the opportunity to get involved in this community project.

Andy Traves (Opus Associate, Fareham) said: “The capital costs of the flood defence scheme are grant or government funded, but the residents, as beneficiaries, are expected to help drive the project. Some residents, including the elderly are not personally able to assist, so we saw this as a great chance to get involved ourselves.”

Lumley Road homeowner Mark Ringwood said: ‘More than 20 volunteers banded together and built the first part of a flood defence which we hope will save our properties.

‘Young and old turned out to build a wall containing more than 1,200 20kg sandbags.

‘We were aided and abetted by volunteers from the Environment Agency, and consultants Opus, and fortified by a plentiful supply of home-cooked food.

‘It was a remarkable community achievement’.