Councillor Oliver Tully has welcomed the allocation of additional funding for coastal protection measures in Baltray that he has been lobbying for since the catastrophic floods of 2002. Work on these measures are to start early in November and will continue for the next few months until complete. Recently the Office of Public Works allocated funding to Louth County Council to carry out additional coastal protection works to prevent the flooding of this picturesque village. In February of 2002 over 30 houses and the local public house in the village were severely damaged as the result of an exceptionally high tide and a variety of other weather related incidents occurring at the same time.
Last year the County Council spent over 25,000 euro closing a breech in the sea defense system at the Meadow Baltray. This breech/gap was located between the Premier Periclase reservoir and a sea defense wall. The previous year, in 2008, funding in excess of 75,000 euro was allocated to increase the height of this sea defense wall. The total fund allocated for these works to date is now in excess of 300,000 euro. The local councilor has been assured by the council officials that these new works should prevent the passage of flood water accessing the village at the Meadows Baltray, in future.
When this funding was allocated in 2009 Cllr Tully stated ‘That this funding while being very welcome was only a drop in the ocean as to what was really required to prevent further flooding of the picturesque village of Baltray and had vowed to continue lobbying until all flood prevention measures had been put in place’.
Earlier this year Councillor Tully lobbied the county council for additional funding to carry out this phase of works to prevent Baltray village from tidal flooding. The County Council’s engineers submitted the proposals to the government for funding to carry out these works. The proposals included the raising of the stone sea defense wall along the promenade and recapping it. This wall is almost 470 meters in length and extends from the village centre to Braghan Bridge. During the flood of 2002 this wall was completely submerged under the flood tide and had shown itself to be totally inadequate for the purpose it was intended. It is hoped to raise this wall to a sufficient height to prevent a further tidal flood over it.
The new works are to include:
- Raising the height of the promenade wall.
- New walls adjacent to the sewerage pumps station at Braghan Bridge.
- Replacement of damaged storm drain outlets along the promenade wall and footpath.
- Works to complete raising the height of the sea defense wall at the Meadow.
- Placement of rock – armor to the new bund wall at the Meadow.
- Raising and resurfacing a portion of the road to the Haven.
- Repairs to the surface water drainage system in the village centre.
While the new funding in the region of 160,000 euro is most welcome Cllr Tully has stated that ‘While the battle to keep out the flood water is almost over there is further works still necessary to prevent a further catastrophic flooding occurring in this picturesque village of Baltray’.