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Exports, Innovation & Investment – a roadmap for 2020

September 19, 2017

The latest UK Flood Partnership meeting saw our biggest turn-out yet, with 50 delegates coming together to hear from top industry speakers on the topic of “Exports, Innovation & investment”. Our Chair, David Rooke MBE provided a warm welcome to visitors and set out the overview for the day. We heard from Mark Lane, Director of the UK Water Partnership about affiliation between the two organisations, and non-executive director Steven Trewhella of Rivelin Bridge elaborated on partnership, collaboration and the need to strengthen the UK narrative for Flood Resilience. The attendees explored a roadmap for the UK Flood Partnership to be recognised as a trusted market place for UK flood risk solutions, services and know-how by 2020.

Alison Baptiste, Director of Strategy & Investment for the Environment Agency, set out the current priorities including the 25 year environment plan, national flood & coastal erosion risk management for England, and the next capital programme. With recent tropical storms Irma, Jose and Maria fresh in everyone’s minds, Alison struck a chord whilst outlining how the Environment Agency is working internationally in sharing knowledge on FCRM.

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Alison Baptiste, Environment Agency

 

Other topics covered included the Environment Agency’s drive for higher education – investing in people and skills and; the next Flood & Coast conference in March 2018. Alison finished in outlining the Environment Agency’s involvement with the UK Flood Partnership – highlighting that our holistic approach to collaboration is welcome in today’s increasingly inter-connected flood sector, with innovation and skills being supported by academic input from partner affiliation and membership. The final presentation of the morning session was delivered by Granville Davies, Manager of Asset Strategy for Yorkshire Water. Granville set out the regulatory priorities, challenges and opportunities faced by water companies today. Again the theme that came out clearly was the importance of partnership working with multiple stakeholders.

Visitors were treated to lunch courtesy of hosts UK Flood Barriers, who provided a Tank Demonstration of their Flood Proof Test House, proving the efficacy of their suite of innovative flood defence solutions – dry feet all round!

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UKFB Test Tank Demonstration

The afternoon plenary session, chaired by David Rooke, started with presentations from founding members of the UK Flood Partnership - Alexis Smith of IMGeospatial supported by Jonathan Abra of Innovate UK (Knowledge Transfer Network), David Wilkes of Arup, Frank Kelly of UK Flood Barriers and Steven Trewhella of Rivelin Bridge. It was then over to the floor to hear feedback from delegates. The whole event was captured by Flood Briefing, the new online service from Environment Analyst. Click here to read the article.

With representation from a wide range of flood risk management stakeholders, including Arup, Atkins, Ambiental, CH2M, HR Wallingford, Arcadis, Waterman Aspen, SDS, Dyrhoff, Opus International, ACO Technologies, Royal Haskoning, JBA, RHEA Group and Centre for Ecology & Hydrology - to name but a few – the meeting achieved its aim of setting out the roadmap for the coming three years and beyond.

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David Wilkes, Arup

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Frank Kelly, UKFB

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David Rooke, UK Flood Partnership Chairman