George V Park in Westbrook to be shut for three months for surface flooding works

George Park Photo Frank Leppard

George V Park in Westbrook will be closed for three months while work to reduce the risk of surface flooding  at nearby All Saints Avenue.

Works, overseen by Kent County Council, are due to start at the end of this month.

The park will be landscaped to store surface water collected from the surrounding roads. This will be collected in ponds and swales, known as attenuation areas, where it will slowly filter through the planting, removing any pollutants and drain back into the groundwater.

KCC Cabinet Member for Highways and Transport Michael Payne said: “We are finding that the intensity of some of the storms we have experienced recently is resulting in more urban flooding which is increasingly difficult to manage.

“Projects like this help to divert water away from the sewer and drainage network and provide a great opportunity to ensure that the systems can cope.

“The new landscape features and variety of planting will improve the park’s overall appearance with the additional benefit of encouraging wildlife to the area.

“We are working in partnership with the Isle of Thanet Tree and Woodland Initiative project who plan to plant up to 50 new trees at the park as part of the project

“We shall also be extending the footpath throughout the park to provide better interconnectivity to the surrounding area.”

The works are aimed at stopping the issue of flooding in homes around the All Saints Avenue area which are affected when heavy rainfall means the sewer reaches capacity. Diverting the surface water will reduce pressure on the sewer network.

The park is owned by Thanet District Council. The maintenance of the newly planted areas will be undertaken by KCC until they are fully established at which point maintenance will revert back to Thanet council.

The project is being overseen by Kent County Council and part funded by the EU Interreg North Seas Region. This involves partners from Belgium, Germany, Sweden, The Netherlands and the UK to deliver the Blue Green Infrastructure through social innovation project BEGIN.

The BEGIN project looks to find solutions which can adapt areas of urban green space to manage surface water flooding, reduce the impacts of climate change and create attractive spaces with multiple uses.


  1. KCC has already carried out extensive works at Hartsdown Park to mitigate flooding in All Saints Avenue – and it has made no difference whatsoever.

    I fail to see how similar works at George Park will solve the problem.

    Whilst I am not a drainage engineer, it seems to me that the major problem of flooding in the area of the railway bridge on All Saints Avenue is surface water running off the access road that serves the All Saints Industrial Estate. The problem has been exacerbated by the building of additional properties at Rollercoaster House development.

    The gullies and sewer from the railway bridge to the station roundabout simply cannot cope at times of heavy or prolonged rain – hence the flooding.

    KCC and Southern Water have dismissed the All Saints Industrial Estate as being the root of the problem despite the fact that it is far closer than George Park so it looks as though more council tax payers money is to be wasted.

  2. John,I am a complete ignoramus and not local. Have you written or spoken to KCC personally? I wish you would, I, in common with everyone, hate to see wasted time, effort and money and what you are saying seems to make sense. I find them very responsive to enquiries.

    • Rest assured that I have been pursuing this matter with TDC, KCC, Southern Water and Roger Gale for at least seven years. I am not one who pointlessly complains about things on social media !

      I have had mostly responses from Southern Water who are responsible for the main sewer. The problem is caused by surface rain water which is apparently the responsibility of KCC. The problem is exacerbated by the fact that the street gullies empty directly into the foul sewer which, according to what I am told by Souther Water, they are not allowed to do.

      I have made my suggestions to KCC and Souther Water but they are of the view that I am wrong.

      The saga and the flooding in times of heavy and prolonged rain continue . . .

  3. In these times of sudden rain fall The George V park seems a limited area to be used as a rain+sewer floodplain but the well known engineers who produced the plan will have different ideas.

    its not a secret.

    The park could become a swamp containing,well i wont go there.

    Maybe do the job to involve fitting large capacity water/sewerage storing attenuation tanks below the park to collect the low lying problem areas-then the roads-then the wash off from residents drives-etc.

    The stored water will be contaminated and can be pumped out via tankers and taken to a safe disposal plant.

    That system is known to work but would need cooperation of many and not the few beancounters.

    my opinion is just that.

  4. People are still paving over their front gardens. (And some back gardens.) It would help reduce flooding if impermeable paving were to be reduced to the minimum needed eg for a path. It’s a depressing sight, a row of paved-over front gardens – many of which have no plants at all and should just be called front yards.

  5. As a new home owner on George V I must say I enjoy the appearance of the large wide road and the luxury to have a green interconnected. I was excited by the prospects of this work being undertaken to not only assist with the drainage of surface water but also to add to a much needed face lift of the park.
    We use the park but only to try to get from one end to the other as it is very boggy in the mudd.
    I am no engineer but I guess we put the trusts and hope into the engineers and brains behind the project to be spending money on renovations which are planned to work. If all else fails we have generated planting and trees which will undoubtably absorb much of the surface water and add to the appearance in our town. If the surface water persists after the project is complete then I dare say an alternative plan would be again created for another option.

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