Southport Eco-centre garden shows how to slow the flow

Visitors to Southport Eco-centre will experience a modified garden space, demonstrating ideas on how to manage rainwater and reduce the impact of surface water.

The garden was designed as part of United Utilities CEO challenge, which tasks current graduates in the company to develop new innovative approaches to existing business problems.

The garden forms part of an education package created by the water company focussing on surface water flooding and raising awareness of the problem.

The loss of permeable ground due to urban development is steadily increasing the risk of more flooding, something unfortunately parts of Southport and the North West has experienced. 

We are seeing more extremes of weather with dry periods and torrential rain.  It’s something we are keen to raise awareness of, particularly around managing surface water, explained Natasha Wild from United Utilities.

 “We’re very excited to work with the Southport Eco-centre to develop an education package on surface water.

“We all need to think creatively and innovatively about how we slow the flow of rainfall into our sewer system to minimise the risk of flooding in the future, using the green space we have available.

“We can’t forget children will be homeowners in the future and it’s great we’ll be able to get them thinking early on about the impact flooding has on our environment.  The new garden will give them hands-on experience of what small changes they and their family can make to the green space they still have, which collectively can make a massive difference,” she said.

Darren Lloyd, one of the resident teachers at the centre said: “With predicted changes to our climate, surface water will become an increasingly important topic in the years to come and how we learn to adapt to it will be crucial. We’ve really enjoyed the challenge of developing the education package so we can get future generations on board now as they start their life journey. We’re looking forward to delivering the new material in the coming months.”