Who got that cash?

July 20, 2007

While the effects of this month's severe floods are still being felt across Yorkshire, the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council has awarded researchers at Sheffield University £2.5 million towards their efforts to help the redevelopment of the River Don's flood plains.

Led by David Lerner at the Catchment Science Centre, the four-year study into "Urban River Corridors and Sustainable Living Agendas" aims to find ways to make better use of local flood plains.

Both Sheffield City Council and the Environment Agency have approved the project.

Professor Lerner is excited about the chance to bring together experts from different disciplines and areas, including researchers from Durham and Bradford universities.

He said: "We begin on the first of January so that we can recruit staff and get a team of researchers all fired up. We all speak different languages, and we have to learn to talk to each other."

Simon Ogden, Sheffield City Council's head of development services, said: "The granting of the funding could not be more timely, and we look forward to meeting with the team to plan a practical programme of investigation, which will strengthen our own work and that of the Environment Agency."

Martin Slater, area planning manager for the Environment Agency, said the funding was "great news".

"We will need to build greater resilience to higher temperatures, rising sea levels and 'boom or bust' rainfall patterns," he said.

The first step in the project is a team walk by the River Don this week to look at the current environment.

In the meantime, the university's accommodation and campus services have offered temporary accommodation to families from the nearby Winn Gardens estate, whose homes were affected by the floods.

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