Flap Valves by Martin Childs Limited
MCL delivers medium to large scale water control structures for the natural environment and industrial applications.
MCL is an experienced contractor, installing many of the products they manufacture. This includes a range of flap valves. Please visit our main site at www.martinchilds.com for details of our other products and services.
Projects up to a value of £1M have been successfully completed over the last 10 years for clients such as the Environment Agency, British Waterways and many of the large UK contractors.
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Bathpool Flap Valves
These flap valves are 1.3 metre diameter self-regulating HDPE valves that protect a dozen houses from flooding in Bathpool near Taunton, Somerset. MCL installed these near the River Tone and are a common sight except at high tide when they blocking the flow of water upstream. They were installed between 2012 and 2013 by Martin Childs Limited.
These flap valves are rarely submerged. They are only used in anger when the River Tone has been locked at the tidal doors on a high tide and there has been heavy rain fall in land resulting in the water levels rising from the water fallen on high ground (the Quantocks) and running into the water coarse beyond the flaps, which is the discharge point into the Tone. However if the Tone has been locked by a high tide this area fills up very quickly and can result in flooding within the local residential area.
Could more work be done to protect the residential area at high tide when there’s heavy rainfall?
Yes but there are limits to what can be done. This area has always been vulnerable to flooding and the problem only happens now and then. This area is flood plain but a lot of Somerset is effected by water level issues when it comes to building. Years ago Somerset was made up of islands and marsh and its only since engineers managed to control the water levels using ditches or as the locals call call them “reens” that they have been able to farm and build on this land. However there will always be that threat of devastating flooding. This area and structure is still vulnerable but the Environment Agency have now installed 2 pumps to over pump from upstream when the flap valves have been closed by the high tide downstream. See illustration.