Concept

Jubilee River

Résumé
The Jubilee River is a hydraulic channel in southern England. It is long and is on average wide. It was constructed in the late 1990s and early 2000s to take overflow from the River Thames and so alleviate flooding to areas in and around the towns of Maidenhead, Windsor, and Eton in the counties of Berkshire and Buckinghamshire. It achieves this by taking water from the left (at this point eastern) bank of the Thames upstream of Boulter's Lock near Maidenhead and returning it via the north bank downstream of Eton. Although successful in its stated aims, residents of villages downstream, such as Wraysbury, claim it has increased flooding in those locations. Parts of the towns of Windsor, Eton and Maidenhead are prone to flooding, because they are built on the flood plain of the River Thames. The concept of a parallel channel which could take water from the Thames above Maidenhead and return it below Windsor was conceived in the 1980s, and became known as the Maidenhead, Windsor and Eton Flood Alleviation Scheme. When the ten regional water authorities were privatised, as a result of the Water Act 1989, responsibility for rivers passed to the National Rivers Authority, which soon afterwards submitted plans for a channel which would be wide and long. In October 1992 a planning enquiry was held to consider the proposals. During that enquiry, P. Ackers, one of the assessors, expressed grave doubts about the hydraulic modelling that had been used to justify the scheme, suggesting that it was too optimistic. The scheme did not receive government approval until 1995; around the same time, there was further reorganisation of the water industry, with the Environment Agency replacing the National Rivers Authority. Although Mr Ackers' concerns had not been addressed, it commissioned the design and construction of the scheme as originally conceived, at a cost of £110 million. Throughout the planning process, from initial feasibility studies to delivery of the project, Lewin, Fryer and Partners were the consulting engineers.
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