EA news: Medway estuary and Swale Strategy

Over the summer the Medway estuary and Swale (MEAS) programme team has been busy working on the contracts for the 3 pieces of work which we will start with: the programme-wide enabling activities, and the 2 schemes (Elmley and South Sheppey, and Sheerness and Queenborough). This means that we can start commissioning work and developing options. 

See below our latest briefing note which introduces the MEAS programme and sets out why we wish to work with partners from across the strategy area.   

As we start this significant programme of works, we know that there is a lot that we don’t know, and that there will be great opportunities for us to achieve more by working with others. We’ll need help from partners working across the area to put the recommendations of the strategy into action, and hopefully achieve even more for people and the environment whilst doing so. 

Please do get in touch with the MEAS team if you have any ideas, risks or opportunities that might interact with the programme: MEASS@environment-agency.gov.uk 

Does the Thames Barrier cause Medway floods?

Extra high tides and flooding on the Medway often happen when the Thames Barrier is closed. In view of the flood event on 21 February 2022, Kelly Tolhurst, MP for Rochester and Strood and MSBA Patron, asked the Environment Agency if there is a causal relationship. Here is the EA’s reply with attachments (spoiler alert: No):

Allington Lock to reopen tomorrow, 3 June

Good news for motor boaters! After a protracted period for major refurbishment, the lock will reopen on 3 June 2021. Initially it will be operated by the contractors, and the lock will be available for two hours before high water and two hours after, between 7am and sunset.

The Environment Agency staff expect to take full control of the lock [and resume normal service] in the week commencing 7 June. For any queries, phone 01622 752864 or email allington.lock@environment-agency.gov.uk

IWA talk on River Medway, Thurs 23 Jan

The Kent & East Sussex Branch of the Inland Waterways Association invite you to an open meeting on the River Medway (the non-tidal bit).

David Payne and Jason Adams from the Environment Agency will be giving an illustrated talk on the Environment Agency’s work on the River Medway, and all are welcome to attend, whether IWA members or not.

Thursday, 23 January 2020 at Strood Yacht Club, Knight Road, Strood, ME2 2AH, at 7.30pm for 8pm

Whopping EA fees hike promotes protests

Boaters on the non-tidal Medway and Thames are to be hit by inflation-busting increases in fees from next year. If boaters abandon these waterways the result will be counter-productive for the Environment Agency.

The public consultation on the EA’s proposed navigation charge increases for 2019 to 2020 and 2020 to 2021 is now live here.

Please respond using this online tool which will enable the EA to manage their comments more effectively. However, if you prefer to respond by email or post, you can email enquiries@environment-agency.gov.uk using ‘Navigation charge proposals 2019 to 2021’ in the title. You will get the consultation documents and a form in the post to complete. All responses must be received by Thursday 30 August 2018.

Temporary closure of non-tidal Medway, 17 April

The Hampstead Lock to Sluice Weir Lock reach of the Upper Medway Navigation will be temporarily lowered on or after 17 April 2018. This is due to an unforeseen issue with the operation of Anchor Sluice which requires urgent attention. The EA do not anticipate that the work will take more than one day and they will reopen the river as soon as possible.

During this time no navigation will be possible in this pen and the EA will be temporarily closing Hampstead Lock and Sluice Weir Lock. The river level lowering will be subject to suitable river and weather conditions, and may be postponed if the conditions are not suitable. For further information please contact Allington Lock on 01622 752864.