York flood defence plans for Museum Gardens and Marygate

20 Jul 2020 03:56 PM

The Environment Agency is holding a virtual public meeting on plans to better protect properties from flooding in the Marygate area of York.

The work will include improving the flood defences in Museum Gardens.

With the impact of climate change there is a need to raise the existing defences and provide an improved line of defence which will better protect 42 homes and 15 businesses.

Final proposals for the flood defence improvement work will be outlined at the meeting at 6pm on Wednesday, 22 July, before the design is submitted to City of York Council for planning approval at the end of the month.

Plans include:

Emma Beever, project manager with the Environment Agency, said:

We appreciate that construction work in this space, which is loved and widely used, will be of interest to many people across the city.

As this site is of such historic and archaeological importance, we have worked closely with York Museum Trust, City of York Council and Historic England to understand the effect of our work and to develop the most suitable option for the Gardens.

Although we cannot currently meet members of the local community in person, we are still keen to give people the opportunity to talk to us about our plans and discuss any concerns with us.

The virtual live event will be held using the Zoom platform. The details are:

  1. Go to Zoom
  2. Input the meeting ID: 837 2852 0804
  3. Click ‘Launch Meeting’. Then, if you don’t want to install the Zoom Client, click ‘join from your browser’
  4. Input the password: YFASMG

People can put questions to the project team online by using the Slido app, event code #YFASMG.

Before the meeting an information pack will be available.

If you have any questions about the meeting and/or would like to join the mailing list email yorkfloodplan@environment-agency.gov.uk.

Further details

The Environment Agency has been working with York Museums Trust, Historic England and City of York Council officers to develop a design which minimises the impact on the gardens and Hospitium, whilst protecting one of the rarest trees in the country.

Work is planned to start next spring at Scarborough Bridge with the site compound located in Marygate car park.

The work in Museum Gardens is planned to start next summer/autumn when the weather is expected to be dry to minimise its impact.

It is expected to take around four months and the gardens will remain open, although access will be restricted near the embankments and footpaths behind the Hospitium in the gardens will be closed.

To allow the embankment to be raised, its footprint will need to be increased so up to 15 trees will have to be removed. For every tree removed, five will be replanted and where possible this will be in Museum Gardens.

As part of the revised plans, a section of the embankment will be realigned around the rare tree.

When the embankment has been completed, landscaping will be carried out to create a wider botanical range of trees, shrubs and herbaceous plants and increased biodiversity in the gardens include flowering trees and shrubs to benefit birds and insects. The woodland area will be improved with tiers of colourful planting reflecting all the seasons.

The terrace at the embankment extension will be grassed to provide seating for the story telling area in the future.

This work forms part of £45 million York Flood Alleviation Scheme, which will better protect 2,000 homes in the city from flooding.

For more information go to the York Flood Alleviation Scheme webpage.

Or follow EnvAgencyYNE on Twitter, York Flood Alleviation Scheme on Facebook or YorkFloodPlan on Instagram.


The Environment Agency’s five year plan identified there was a risk of flooding for the area on the left bank of the river Ouse between Scarborough Bridge and Lendal Bridge including Earlsborough Terrace, Marygate carpark and surrounding properties, Museum Gardens and properties at Lendal Bridge.

Flood defences were built in 1983 to protect the area which had flooded several times but in November 2000 flood water came within 50 millimetres of overtopping the defences.