Bridgwater Barrier

A new tidal barrier at Bridgwater could enhance navigation to the River Parrett and the ability to access Bridgwater Docks. We are campaigning for the best outcome for waterways in the area.

See latest updates

IWA West Country Branch continues to lobby (February 2020) - We have submitted a letter to the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs setting out our objections to and representations on the application made by the Environment Agency on 19 December 2019 for a Transport & Works Act Order to construct a Tidal Barrier on the River Parrett at Bridgwater, Somerset. Read the full text of the letter and its accompanying appendix here.  

Help us push for a reversal (September 2019) - We have distributed a press release which highlights the refusal of the Bridgwater Tidal Barrier Scheme Project Board to agree to the reservation of land within the bypass channel of the barrier for the future construction of a lock and approach channels.  Read the full press release here. We welcome your support in pushing for the reversal of this ruling.

Latest Proposals December 2018 - The Environment Agency and Sedgemoor District Council have been working together to develop these proposals to reduce the risk of flooding in Bridgwater and the surrounding area. These works are important to protect property from flooding and support the future development of Bridgwater. The latest proposals for the Bridgwater Tidal Barrier Scheme are available for viewing. (10MB PDF). 

Public Consultation 10th July 2017

Sedgemoor District Council and the Environment Agency are holding a public consultation on the Bridgwater Tidal Barrier Scheme on Monday 10th July.  This will comprise a drop-in session from 2pm to 7pm at Bridgwater Town Hall, High Street, Bridgwater, TA6 3AS.

The West Country Branch has been running a Campaign for nearly three years now, the principal aim of which is to make the best use of the proposed tidal barrier to enhance navigation on the River Parrett through using the barrier to pen water on certain occasions during the boating season.  Our Campaign includes promoting the regeneration of Bridgwater Docks and in particular restoring the Barge Lock and Bascule Bridge so as to reconnect the River Parrett with the Bridgwater & Taunton Canal.  This will potentially make a longer route available for navigation, with all the leisure, recreation, tourism and economic benefits that this can bring.

In addition to the main Tidal Barrier Scheme – the principal objective of which IWA is fully supportive of – a separate “Opportunities and Enhancements” group has been established to consider the wider community aspects that the scheme could bring about.

We urge as many members, volunteers and supporters to attend the public consultation and for you to put forward your views on the future of the Tidal Barrier Scheme and the added benefits that enhanced navigation on the River Parrett and the regeneration of Bridgwater Docks can bring.  We are keen to show support for the following:

  • That the tidal barrier, when constructed, is in principle capable of penning water at a fixed level of 4.45m AOD (Above Ordnance Datum)  to enable navigation to Burrowbridge;
  • The inclusion of a Visitor Centre and other community facilities both at the tidal barrier and upstream of the barrier (for example Cycle Paths linking Bridgwater Town Centre with the tidal barrier);
  • Restoring the Barge Lock and the Bascule Bridge at Bridgwater Docks thus enabling the reconnection of the River Parrett with Bridgwater Docks and the Bridgwater & Taunton Canal; and
  • Installing navigation infrastructure upstream of the tidal barrier to Burrowbridge and beyond, thus facilitating increased navigation on these river stretches.

The West Country Branch Committee plans to be in attendance at the public consultation and will be pleased to answer any questions you have on these proposals.

For further information please email Ray Alexander:

15th November 2016: IWA Comments on Bridgwater Tidal Barrier Options

26th February 2015: IWA West Country Branch Launches Campaign to Improve Use of the Proposed Tidal Surge Barrier on the River Parrett at Bridgwater

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