Many of of you will, I'm sure have been worrying ever since the alarming incident in 2019 when the Toddbrook Reservoir in Whaley Bridge, Derbyshire showed signs of collapse, and there was widespread panic. You have probably been concerned that the same thing might happen at Bewl Reservoir, flooding Lamberhurst and the Teise valley, and even threatening our fishing!
Well I can now report, following a visit with our Chairman to Bewl Water, that there is an ambitious project in hand to mitigate any such occurrence. A large scale engineering solution will be put in place to lower the level of the reservoir by 5 metres (over 5 days), should there be any risk of collapse. This will (the engineers have calculated) reduce the risk to an acceptable level, so we can sleep easy in our beds, or carry on fishing.
Some seriously big pipes will be primed to siphon out the water over the dam, into a new underground discharge chamber and then into an enlarged spillway, where it can be steadily discharged into the river, with minimal disruption (we are assured). The system will be tested (and we will be notified in advance), and we also expect an early warning system to be established in case of its use in earnest.
If such an incident ever happens, it's only likely to occur in Winter, when the reservoir is full, so only a few of our hardy Winter Fishers are likely to be at risk of overtopping their wellies, but we thought you'd like to know what's going on at Bewl.
The project is part of a country-wide response to the Derbyshire incident, so it's good to know that the EA have our interests in mind, and felt it important to consult us about the project.
So enjoy the fishing without fear of a sudden tsunami, and above all, Don't Panic!