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Garmouth and Kingston flood worries continue

By Ewan Malcolm

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VILLAGERS in Garmouth and Kingston have raised their concerns over the ongoing threat of flooding in the area with local MP Douglas Ross.

Garmouth flooding 2021. Picture: Becky Saunderson
Garmouth flooding 2021. Picture: Becky Saunderson

The village has been flooded 11 times in the past year alone as the River Spey continues to move gradually westwards.

Prevention measures costing up to £275,000 have been agreed in principle by Moray Council although money is yet to be set aside to finance the work.

Mr Ross said: "The situation of flooding in Garmouth and Kingston continues to be an issue of real concern for local residents and they are still waiting for solutions after years and years of campaigning.

"There is little comfort to be taken from a recent council decision to investigate further options, which may or may not see limited defences built up to protect Garmouth from the River Spey.

"We've been here too many times before. We don't need more options, we need action.

"With heavy rainfall events occurring with much greater frequency, and when combined with seasonal high tides, the risk to people, property and farmland is all too real for local people.

Mr Ross says that one resident has been flooded 11 times over a 12-month period leading to costly constant repairs and the loss of several items of great sentimental value.

He added: "Likewise, those living along Beach Road at Kingston fear each high tide with erosion of the shingle bank along the shoreline causing real concern. This is their only protection from the sea and whilst Moray Council sits back, taking what they call a 'watching brief' on the shingle bank, homeowners are frustrated at the lack of progress in shoring up the bank or installing rock armour to provide a greater level of confidence.

"Working with local councillor Marc Macrae and the community I will continue to seek solutions, but we need the council to fully grasp the seriousness of the situation and finally agree to act to protect Garmouth and Kingston."

Douglas Ross has demanded action after residents raised their concerns recently. Picture: Daniel Forsyth
Douglas Ross has demanded action after residents raised their concerns recently. Picture: Daniel Forsyth

Moray Council, responding to Mr Ross' comments, have said that a review of two potential solutions set out in November has been requested.

A spokesperson for Moray Council said: "Following the review of a topographical study in July 2021 a number of potential solutions were set out, and shared with the community in August 2021.

"In November 2021 the council proposed - in principle – two potential solutions to reduce the frequency of flooding from the River Spey by placing low level rock armour bund within the bridge openings on the railway embankment, and for natural flood management including planting of the field with willow obtained from the east bank of the Spey.

"Fallen trees could also be buried in the field with their root balls exposed; both of these should help create a natural barrier to flooding by causing the river to deposit sediment in low-lying areas.

"Councillors have requested a review of these two chosen measures including construction and cost, and a further report setting this out will be sent to Full Council."

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