Shropshire Council

Slow the flow!

Working in partnership with Shropshire Wildlife Trust, the Environment Agency, English Severn and Wye RFCC, landowners and community flood action groups, the aim of the project is to use natural methods to ‘slow the flow’ in a number of catchments and reduce flood risk to communities downstream.

The six-year project seeks to take an alternative approach to the management of flood risk, rather than the construction of traditional flood defences, considering catchments as a whole, and looking to reduce or slow flows nearer to their source. This will be done in a number of ways...

Increasing infiltration into the soil

Allowing more water to soak away means less water travels quickly downstream where it may cause flooding problems.

Slowing water down as it flows through the catchment

By constructing features such as “leaky dams” or putting other obstructions across the flood plain and in channels, heavier flows can be held back, and flood levels downstream reduced.

Storing water upstream

By using existing storage areas and creating new ponds and basins, flood water can be stored upstream and released slowly, rather than rushing downstream.

We're currently working with partners across the catchments of the Battlefield Drain, (Shrewsbury) and the Seifton Brook (Culmington). As the project progresses, we hope to add more information to this page to keep you updated.


The first phase of the project is now complete, and has involved the removal of traditional highway gullies and the construction / enhancement of sustainable drainage measures by means of a large swale. 

Working with the landowner, we have installed leaky dams and other natural measures in the Battlefield Drain and its tributaries. We're currently investigating further options in the catchment, including an attenuation pond.


In October 2016, contractors are due to start installing natural measures at three sites in the Seifton Brook catchment. Works will include a series of leaky dams, culvert improvements, desilting ponds to increase capacity and a green bank revetment. Where possible, materials will be sourced locally.

Involvement from landowners and the local community flood action group has been positive in progressing this scheme. A number of landowners have recently implemented measures such as hedging and soil aeration, with encouraging results.

A rain gauge and water level gauge have been installed, and data is monitored by the local community flood action group.

Some of the leaky dams which have already been installed were tested during heavy rainfall.


A level gauge has been installed, and data is being monitored by the community flood action group. Landowners and the community flood action group are assisting with habitat mapping and identifying locations to install natural measures.

Wider Corvedale catchment

Initial site visits have been carried out but habitat mapping is not yet complete. The wider Corvedale catchment will offer further partnership working opportunities and will help reduce flood risk to Ludlow and local rural communities.