Port of Workington Flood Protection
Port of Workington
Harbours and Ports
Flood and coastal risk management
Severe flooding of the River Derwent in November 2009 caused significant damage to the Port of Workington. Now, following repairs to the port and harbour to protect it from future flooding, the port has secured over £5.7 million pounds of investment through the Britain’s Energy Coast initiative to help it achieve its aim to become one of Europe’s major freight hubs.
Workington is an ancient market and industrial town on the mouth of the River Derwent where it joins the Irish Sea. The town’s port is one of the largest in Cumbria, and a vital gateway for industry, agriculture, manufacturing and processing businesses in the North West of England. The first shipments of coal from Workington to Ireland took place in 1604. Today it handles 300,000 tonnes of cargo and around 300 ship movements annually.
The north west of England has the highest levels of rainfall in the UK and has always been prone to flooding, but the 300mm of rain that fell in twenty-four hours before Friday 20 November 2009, was unprecedented. Flood water from the River Derwent caused considerable damage to many communities including Cockermouth and Keswick, before reaching the Port of Workington, washing away parts of bridges, quay walls and the riverbank. Over 120,000 tonnes of debris, including boulders, rocks, trees and silt, were deposited in the river basin - enough to fill 24 Olympicsized swimming pools.
Read the full Port of Workington Flood
Protection case study