Natural Flood Management Information Evening

On Monday 1st November, the Mayor of Todmorden, Councillor Pat Taylor will host a Natural Flood Management Open Evening at Todmorden Town Hall.

The Mayor will be joined by speakers from key organisations active in supporting and developing natural flood management and flood prevention projects along the Calder Valley including Slow The FlowCalderdale Council, Treesponsibility, Environment Agency, the Todmorden Flood Group and the Calder Rivers Trust.

The evening will combine a series of short presentations with an exhibition to explore natural flood management techniques and  how these can be used to help slow the flow water coming down the hillsides of Todmorden and reduce flood risk in the Town.

This free event is very much focussed on Todmorden, and the Mayor is keen to encourage local landowners living above the town at the top of the catchment to come along; that said the information presented will be of relevance to all residents of the Town and will look at flood mitigation solutions for all sizes of property as well as what happens during a flood and the support available for those who experience flooding.

Doors to the event will open at 18:30 with presentations commencing at 19:00.  There will be time before and after the event to view the exhibition.


Stuart Bradshaw and Adrian Horton – Slow The Flow

‘How does Slow The Flow support our community to reduce flood risk’


Stuart Bradshaw and Adrian Horton are founding members and Trustees at Slow The Flow. They set up Slow The Flow with other members of the community in 2016 to look at why the Calder Valley floods and to explore how natural methods can make a contribution to reduce flood risk.  Their work is now recognised throughout Yorkshire and around the UK as purveyors of good practise and other communities are building upon this practical work and analysis which has been developed by Slow The Flow.    They work closely with The Environment Agency, Calderdale Council, Yorkshire Water and many other organisations and charities around the UK to develop ideas, strategies and practical applications for Natural Flood Management. 

Stuart Bradshaw is a Civil and Structural Engineer and Adrian Horton works for a vehicle leasing business providing mobility solutions to companies and individuals. 

Ben Fenton – Calderdale Council

‘The Natural Flood Management Landowner Grant Scheme’

Ben Fenton is the Natural Flood Management Project Officer at Calderdale Council. A graduate of Environmental Science at Leeds University. Prior to his time at the council, he managed environmental projects at environmental charities, including the official river improvement project for the London 2012 Olympics, and a mile of new reedbed in one of the UK’s most polluted river’s London’s River Lea.  He has worked in partnership with Enfield Council to deliver the CIRIA case study Firs Farm Wetlands and is a Winston Churchill Fellow for his study of sustainable drainage in Seattle and Portland, USA.

Sally Kelling – Environment Agency

‘Natural Flood Management in Calderdale – part of the big picture’

Sally Kelling is the NFM lead in the Calderdale Partnerships and Strategic Overview team at the Environment Agency. Her work focuses on strategy, project management, technical support and research. Prior to the Environment Agency Sally has worked in the water industry, local and central government, universities and charities in Yorkshire and internationally using her degree in environmental chemistry and masters in water management.

The Environment Agency works to create better places for people and wildlife, and support sustainable development.  Within England the Environment Agency are responsible for: regulating major industry and waste; treatment of contaminated land; water quality and resources; fisheries; inland river, estuary and harbour navigations; conservation and ecology. We are also responsible for managing the risk of flooding from main rivers, reservoirs, estuaries and the sea.

Christina Hooley – Treesponsibility

‘Five ways that trees can help mitigate flood risk’

Christina has a lifetime concern and love for the natural environment. Born and raised in Hampshire, she fell in love with the Calder Valley at first sight in 1981. The valley worked its magic on her and has been her adopted home since 1997. She had planned a career in the field and began a degree in Botany, but, as is often the case, life took her on a different path. This lead eventually to a BA in creative arts and ten years working in community theatre.

After discovering Treesponsibility in 2000, she became its number one volunteer. She Joined Treesponsibility in 2005 as coordinator for both Volunteer engagement, and its tree planting holiday initiative, ‘Holidays that don’t cost the earth’, launched that year.  When Treesponsibility’s founder, Dongria, was diagnosed with cancer in 2017, Christina was appointed coordinator. When Dongria sadly passed away earlier this year, Christina took the reins as Treesponsibility’s sole coordinator.

Sarah-Jayne Robins – Todmorden Flood Group

‘Why Todmorden Floods & the Role of the Todmorden Flood Group’

Chair of Todmorden Flood Group, EA flood warden and vice chair of the Community Resilience Operational Group. 

SJ is a founding member of TFG and has worked in partnership with all flood groups in the upper Calder Valley, EA, CMBC, Todmorden parish council and the local third sector since 2012. She regularly gives educational talks regarding how flooding affects Todmorden on both a macro and micro level. SJ has lived experience of flooding in Todmorden and the impact it has on a personal level. SJ has also trained as a mental first aider in order to help her community during flooding events.”

Dr Jane Rowling – Calder Rivers Trust

‘The multiple benefits of healthy soils’

Jane is the Farm and Rural Liaison Officer for Calder and Colne Rivers Trust. Her work focuses on helping farmers and rural landowners, however large or small, to improve their carbon capture and water quality, while working with nature to support the sustainability of farms and rural businesses. Jane has been working on building the Trust’s capacity for confidential farm advice and soil testing.

Calder and Colne Rivers Trust is a registered charity which cares for the River Calder and its tributaries, covering the Calderdale, Kirklees and Wakefield areas. The Trust’s activities include working closely with other partners and communities in the Calder catchment to protect and improve waterways. We are one of sixty local organisations which make up the Rivers Trusts Network, a group of environmental charities in the UK and Ireland dedicated to protecting and improving river environments for the benefit of people and wildlife.

Coronavirus Guidelines

We will be following the ‘Hands, Face, Space’ guidelines at the event, face coverings are advised and social distancing will be in place including the seating area for the presentations. We ask that if you are feeling unwell and presenting symptoms of Coronovirus please do not attend. Thanks for your understanding.