Enfield - Pymmes Brook Catchment

Venue: Enfield-London, United Kingdom

Pymmes Catchment

Pymmes Brook is a main river which flows mainly through the southern half of the London Borough of Enfield on a west-east course, its catchment area is heavily urbanised with a mixture of residential, employment and industrial land-uses, as well as a number of green public open spaces. It is a 13km² catchment and comprises other tributary watercourses and surface water sewers.

The river itself along with other watercourses and waterbodies in the catchment have suffered from chronic water pollution issues and posed surface water flood risk due to the principally urban runoff regime.

Over the last few years since 2013 a range of SuDS and BGI measures have been targeted at certain locations in the catchment in order to address some of the issues. These have comprised in the main part de-culverting schemes in order to divert surface water flows to newly constructed integrated wetlands. Large projects at Firs Farm (4,000m² wetland) and Pymmes Brook Catchment (2,000m² wetland) on the Moore Brook tributary have been implemented in existing parks in order to deliver water quality improvements and flood storage as well as transforming the characteristics of the space to encourage wildlife, biodiversity and amenity value. These projects have been delivered by Enfield Council with funding mechanisms secured in a variety of ways from central and regional government, water companies and other organisations.

These schemes have been utilised and contributed to by local environmental charities and community groups, who have carried out volunteer events to plant reed-beds, clean the space and hold educational and recreational events, thereby demonstrating the beginnings of developing social innovation around their use and function.

With these practices it is anticipated that others can be developed in order to ensure that the maintenance and care of the assets can be safeguarded to ensure their function, ideally through social innovation such as these.

As well as the on-going maintenance of these projects there is scope to develop further SuDS measures in other parks highway infrastructure, schools and new and existing residential spaces within the Pymmes catchment in order to complement the existing schemes by delivering further water quality benefits and holding back more of the flow, as well as delivering further associated benefits appropriate to their settings. These measures are to be delivered in line with Enfields Surface Water Management Plan and the Local Flood Risk Management Strategy.

Further methods of funding and ensuring on-going maintenance are hoped to be explored as part of the BEGIN project.

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