Drainage Works

There are a number of references to significant floods occurring in certain parts of the village.

Drainage improvement project 2021 – 2023

Rode lies within the catchment of the Somerset Frome which drains in a northerly direction to the north-west of the village. There are three streams which rise from springs within the sub-catchment and drain into the River Frome. One of these streams flows into and through the village, contained for the majority of its length within a piped culvert from the A361, briefly daylighted adjacent to the school and then beneath Lower Street.

The wider sub-catchment is largely rural, consisting predominantly of arable (intensively farmed for cereals and maize) and occasional pasture. This gives rise to numerous surface water flow pathways that carry sediment loaded runoff.

The map below shows the catchment area for the main drainage system in Rode, commencing in the south-east corner, by Duck Pool Farm, down through Moberley Pond (just north of Seymour’s Court Farm), to the larger pond, before passing under the A361 past the Church Farm houses and

Above: Rode drainage catchment

In April 2020, Mendip District Council secured £180,000 from the Somerset Rivers Authority to further investigate the issues in Rode, develop a detailed proposal and deliver mitigation/ enhancement works for improved Flood Risk Management in the village. The pandemic delayed initial commencement on the project to the early part of 2021.

The first phase was to gather information. This included active engagement with the local community to gather all flood risk incident data not already captured, to understand the community aspirations for flood risk management in the locality, to discuss any concerns and to develop opportunities (as a collective) to further enhance surface water management, biodiversity and amenity spaces in the village.

A CCTV survey of the storm drainage and culverted watercourses was then undertaken in March 2021 to examine the condition of the buried pipes and culverts that extend under the village of Rode. Additional topographic survey work was also undertaken upstream of the village: adjacent to the church, through Seymour Court Farm and up towards Rudge Lane. These surveys enabled the survey team to capture both the enclosed drainage system within the village and the open watercourse that feeds into the system. A map showing the location of the CCTV survey and the defective areas identified is shown below.

The main aims of the Somerset Rivers Authority (SRA) funded work in Rode was to reduce flood risks to more than 25 properties (in Lower Street, High Street, The Brewery plus the primary school) and nine roads, and to enhance parts of the local environment through techniques of Natural Flood Management (NFM). The main rectification work commenced in March 2023 and included:

  • removal of debris, jetting and CCTV
  • replacement and repair of culvert soffits
  • structural lining of drainage pipework
  • replacement of drainage pipework
  • root cutting and root removal
  • clearing ditches and improving connections

The works were delivered by Montel Civil Engineering Limited on behalf of the former Mendip District Council and designed by Calm Engineering.
By summer 2023 all the scheduled contracted works had been successfully delivered, with the exception of some repair and improvement works at the juntion of Straight Lane and Crooked Lane. Rode PC is liaising with Somerset Council to understand the time scale for completion of these works.

Below are some interesting details of some of the contracted works being completed:

Lower Street
Prior to Montel commencing on site, CCTV investigations of the culvert were completed which discovered the footway above part of Lower Street was held up by a timber beam construction. To improve this section, Montel’s site team were required to remove the degraded existing timber beams and replace them with concrete units, to provide a long-lasting structure. This area was subsequently resurfaced, and the footway reopened.

High Street
The site team worked in various locations on High Street to replace gully connections and carrier drains, remove and replace lengths of damaged pipes and jet clean and install structural liners to existing pipes.

East of Rode

Some drainage improvement works commenced in October 2021 at Seymour Court Farm, with the installation of a new field drain installed between Green Park Pond and Green Park Lane (see below):

29 July 2023
Last Updated
7 February 2024