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Cowbit farmer William Tyrrell says spring crop is becoming more remote after River Welland breached banks at Crowland again





A farmer says the prospect of a spring crop is becoming more remote after his land was once again flooded after another River Welland breach.

William Tyrrell says recovery has taken a step back after the swollen river levels increased and it ended up spilling through the hole in the bank of the Cowbit and Crowland washes – which appeared last month as a result of Storm Henk.

The Environment Agency, which is responsible for managing some of the area’s rivers, has been investigating what caused the bank on the outskirts of Crowland to give way and flood nearby fields and was hoped to start repairs shortly.

The River Welland is once spilling through the hole in the bank of Cowbit and Crowland Wash PHOTO: Rich Decamps
The River Welland is once spilling through the hole in the bank of Cowbit and Crowland Wash PHOTO: Rich Decamps

Heavy rain over the end of last week and Saturday night had once again caused the Welland to rise and spill through the hole.

Mr Tyrrell, who farms with his father Trevor around the wash, said: “It has put us back a step back further from recovery. There was a prospect that some of the land may have been semi-cropable but now that is looking pretty remote.

“The prospect of a spring crop is becoming more remote by the day.”

Farmer William Tyrrell with a previous crop of pumpkins
Farmer William Tyrrell with a previous crop of pumpkins

Up to 50% of the land farmed by the family had been impacted by the hole which appeared by the January storms.

The heavy rain has also seen the river levels in Spalding looking pretty high over the last few days and the EA had also issued a flood warning for Surfleet Reservoir.

There are also reports of bank slips in the Gosberton area but it has not just been the farmers which have been affected by the issues.

Baytree Owl and Wildlife Centre posted yesterday: “After being closed on Friday due to flooding we were able to open yesterday after having the pumps on overnight.

“Unfortunately last night’s heavy rain has meant we are flooded again, so while we are trying to move water and make all the paths accessible again, we are going to just let visitors in for free until such a time where the public can access all the pathways.”

The Environment Agency said that it is continuing to develop a plan to repair the damaged bank of the Cowbit and Crowland Washes

A spokesman said:During Storm Henk, two breaches developed in the cradge bank of Crowland and Cowbit Washes. The bank has been inspected and plans are being made for repairs.

“It should be noted that whilst the Washes have not flooded regularly recently, they are designated as flood storage.

“Following heavy rainfall on a wet catchment on Friday and Saturday, levels in the River Welland have risen again.

“Water is now flowing back into the Washes, through the existing breaches. This is not unexpected given the recent weather conditions.

“The bank will be inspected again for further damage. We continue to develop a plan for repair. We are liaising closely with affected parties and working to remove the water as conditions allow.”



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