Owners fear beck blockage will see devastating floods return

Mark Wardingley and Ian Thornton by Thornhills Beck, Wakefield Road, Brighouse.
Mark Wardingley and Ian Thornton by Thornhills Beck, Wakefield Road, Brighouse.

The devastating impact of the Boxing Day floods in 2015 could strike again, Brighouse businesses owners have warned.

Storm Brian brought heavy downpours and strong winds at the weekend and factories around Clifton Beck saw water levels rise alarmingly high again.

Owners say it is a result of the beck being clogged up by debris and flytippers dumping items such as fridge freezers. Now, they are demanding action to keep the beck clear.

Ian Thornton, managing director from Phoenix Pressings, said there is a major problem and water is only trickling out from the beck into the river.

“Our businesses don’t want to be flooded again - we are only just coming to terms from the last one and getting back to normal.

“We are all nervous that the floods like 2015 are going to happen again. No-one seems to be bothered about the problem.”

Mr Thornton said there needs to be regularly maintenance of the beck to keep it flowing freely.

Mark Wardingley, managing director at JW Lister Wireworks, believes the continued developments in the area and in Clifton has resulted in nowhere for water to be soaked up.

He also said the problems will only get worse, putting his business in jeopardy but also flooding will occur further upstream around the ford.

Calderdale Council was unable to comment specifically on the situation at Clifton Beck. But the leader of the council, Coun Tim Swift, said on the response to Storm Brian throughout

Calderdale: “Although heavy rain was forecast for Saturday, the intensity and duration of the rainfall was unexpected.

“However, as soon as flood alerts were issued, council teams swung into action clearing gullies and debris to keep the highways as clear as possible. Thankfully, the rivers did not breach their banks, but we will continue to monitor levels throughout the coming days.”