Commemorative benches remembering Northway and Marston residents installed as part of flood alleviation scheme

Oxford City Council has installed commemorative benches to celebrate the lives and work of Northway and Marston residents as part of a flood alleviation scheme.

Labour councillor John Tanner, Executive Board Member for a Clean and Green Oxford, said: “The flood alleviation scheme was created as a response to concerns raised by local residents, and residents have been involved at all stages of the planning, design and construction of the project. As the £2.2m project comes to a close, it is absolutely right that we remember local residents who contributed so much to these communities.”

The City Council completed work on the £2.2m Northway and Marston Flood Alleviation Scheme in July, protecting 110 homes from surface water flash flooding.

The project saw water channels realigned, natural embankments installed, and temporary flood water storage areas created in Northway Field and Court Place Farm Recreation Ground.

As part of the project, four commemorative benches have been installed in Northway Field and Court Place Farm Recreation Ground.

The benches feature plaques celebrating the work of residents and community groups:

  • The dedication to Robert (Bob) Ewers in Northway Field reads: “Thank you Robert (Bob) Ewers for your dedication to amateur football and for running Northway Boys' Football Club for over 20 years.”
  • The dedication to Elizabeth (Betty) Standingford in Northway Field reads: “Thank you Betty Standingford for your dedication to the community of Northway and for establishing Northway’s first community centre.”
  • The dedication to Clive Taylor in Court Place Recreation Ground reads: “Thank you Clive Taylor for your dedication to amateur football and for starting Saxon Warriors Football Club, playing your last game at the age of 70.”
  • The dedication to OXSRAD in Court Place Recreation Ground reads: “Thank you OXSRAD for your dedication to making sport and recreation accessible for all (Oxford & District Sports and Recreation Association for the Disabled, established 1988).”

OXSRAD, which is based near Court Place Farm Recreation Ground, offers sport and recreational activities and opportunities for people with disabilities.

The Northway and Marston Flood Alleviation Scheme was delivered by Oxford City Council after successfully winning funding from the Environment Agency (£1.6m) and Oxfordshire Local Enterprise Partnership (£600,000).

Northway and Marston have been hit by flash flooding in the past due to their close proximity to Peasmoor Brook and the Headington Hill Tributary. It can take as little as half an hour of torrential rain to cause flooding of homes in the areas.

In the event of a torrential rain, water will now be channelled into the three temporary flood water storage areas, and then released into the drainage system and waterways at a pace they can cope with.

The new FA-compliant and full-size football pitch in Northway Community Field, which has been created as part of the flood alleviation scheme, will open next year.