THE final section of West Kirby’s controversial flood defence wall has been installed, but work on the project continues.
The 1.2metre wall was approved by a council committee in 2021, despite campaigners arguing it will stop people coming to the town.
The distinctive ‘wave’ design of the structure can now be seen.
In a statement issued on behalf of the contractors, the council said:
“The final pre-cast concrete section of the wall was installed on South Parade on Friday (April 27) meaning the construction of the flood wall at West Kirby is complete.
“There is still work ongoing, however, to finish highway and paving improvements, install the floodgates, put the slatted seating and memorial plaques onto the wall and reinstate the shelters.
“But with the wall structure in place and the majority of the pavement surfacing complete on the wall side of South Parade, the promenade at West Kirby is now more accessible to pedestrians than it has been for nearly 10 months – just in time for the first of a number of long weekends in May.”
During the meeting that led to the wall’s approval in 2021, it was heard that over the next 100 years, approximately 26 people would be at risk of being killed if protections are not put in place, and that more than 70 properties would also be protected by a flood wall.
But local campaigners believed the flood wall was “a threat to the appearance of the town”.
There had been local opposition to the planned flood defence wall since before planning permission was granted. More than 1125 signatures on an online petition and 257 comments on the planning portal.
In total 23 were in favour, of those 12 lived on South Parade.
198 were against it, of those over 40 lived on South Parade and the side roads.
A couple who live nearby said at the time the scheme was passed:
“As residents who live within yards of South Parade we regard the scheme as a scandalous folly in the making: exorbitant cost and irresponsible use of carbon-producing concrete for a barrier which is completely unnecessary and unwanted by the very large majority of the people it is claimed to protect, and which will spoil the promenade for the thousands who enjoy it.”
Source: Wirral Globe