Aerial surveys reveals North Devon’s flooding secrets

12:49 06 June 2014

A 3D map view of East-the-Water, Bideford, taken by the LiDAR laser mapping survey. Picture: Tellus South West.

A 3D map view of East-the-Water, Bideford, taken by the LiDAR laser mapping survey. Picture: Tellus South West.

Tellus South West

‘Unprecedented’ Tellus South West mapping project reveals the land in detail as never before.

A 3D map view of the cliffs at Foreland Point near Lynmouth – Devon’s most northerly point, taken by the LiDAR laser mapping survey. Picture: Tellus South West.A 3D map view of the cliffs at Foreland Point near Lynmouth – Devon’s most northerly point, taken by the LiDAR laser mapping survey. Picture: Tellus South West.

NORTH Devon is one of the ‘culprits’ responsible for the catastrophic flooding of the Somerset Levels, a groundbreaking aerial survey project has revealed.

The Tellus South West project has mapped the soils, rocks, landscape and ecology to unprecedented depth and detail.

It could prove crucial to understanding or preventing flooding in North Devon and further afield – including the revelation that run off from here helped feed floods in Somerset earlier this year that left communities cut off for weeks.

Tellus was funded by the Natural Environment Research Council and a joint venture between the British Geological Survey, British Antarctic Survey and the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology.

A 3D map view of looking inland over the Old Burrow Roman Fortlet near Countisbury taken by the LiDAR laser mapping survey. Picture: Tellus South West.A 3D map view of looking inland over the Old Burrow Roman Fortlet near Countisbury taken by the LiDAR laser mapping survey. Picture: Tellus South West.

The maps and data can be freely downloaded, and provide world-leading information on natural resources, the landscape and environment that will be used by businesses, government and scientists for many years to come.

A whole raft of uses could include agriculture, mining, quarrying, new developments and environmental work.

For the first time the whole South West was covered by two airborne surveys, a low flying geophysical one and a specialist high flying Lidar survey where a laser is bounced off the ground to give a map accurate to a few centimetres.

Dr Andy Howard of the British Geological Survey said the project had gone extremely well and was all about getting better data for the experts to work with.

A 3D map view overlooking Ilfracombe, taken by the LiDAR laser mapping survey. Picture: Tellus South West.A 3D map view overlooking Ilfracombe, taken by the LiDAR laser mapping survey. Picture: Tellus South West.

“One of the things we really needed to know about was what happens to rainwater when it hits the ground, how much is absorbed into the soil and rivers and how much contributes to flooding,” he said.

North Devon had many drainage systems confined to steep valleys, he said, such as that which caused the Lynmouth disaster, and better understanding of where water will go would help manage flood risk.

“Some of the drainage from North Devon flows eastwards towards the Somerset Levels, so knowing how it flows will help us in the future to understand how that flooding works and to alleviate it.”

For more information on the project visit www.tellusgb.ac.uk

Other News Stories

Yesterday, 11:16
The Torrington Trumpton bonfire 2015.

Crowds were treated to a giant charity bonfire and spectacular fireworks display in Torrington last night (Saturday).

Read more
Saturday, August 29, 2015
Winkleigh Airfield aircraft watch tower

A two-storey World War Two watchtower and parts of a secret wartime airfield are being auctioned for £35,500-£50,000 on September 22, along with its nine acres of land and several outbuildings.

Read more
Friday, August 28, 2015
Bideford Hospital.

Health bosses announces plans for sessions in Hatherleigh, Lynton and Barnstaple

Read more
Friday, August 28, 2015

Fire fighters rushed to flat in Marlborough Court, Bideford, where they found a woman trapped inside and smoke issuing from the building.

Read more
Friday, August 28, 2015
Artist's impression of the completed Anchorwood Bank development

Firs stage of major Barnstaple development will be completed by Christmas 2016

Read more
Friday, August 28, 2015
Natalie Jones lost her life in the collision near Knowle. Picture: Michelle Ley

A 30-year-old from Ilfracombe has been questioned by police following the fatal collision on August 21

Read more
Friday, August 28, 2015

Three cars scratched in Springfield Road and another damaged in Bellaire

Read more
Friday, August 28, 2015

Traffic is reportedly backed up after collision on the B3230 between the A39 and Muddiford Inn.

Read more
Thursday, August 27, 2015
Hundreds of people met in Barnstaple on Thursday evening to release purple balloons in memory of Katie Gammon, who died on Sunday. Picture: Andy Keeble

Family and friends line banks of the river to remember inspirational teen.

Read more
Thursday, August 27, 2015
Ilfracombe Carnival 2015

It’s carnival time as the town celebrates

Read more

Local Weather

Overcast

Overcast

max temp: 14°C

min temp: 14°C

Most Read News

Great British Life


Great British Life

Advertise in the paper
Submit a Story
Subscribe to the paper
Competitions
North Devon Football League
Order Photos
Family notices
iwitness24
Facebook
Twitter
Google Plus Page
Reader Travel

Family Notices 24

Digital Edition

Image
Read the North Devon Gazette e-edition today E-edition


North Devon's trusted business finder