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Time capsule good to go for Eastbury residents

John Garvey

Reporter:

John Garvey

Time capsule good to go for Eastbury residents

Villagers in Eastbury are sending a message across the decades to their descendants.

After three years, the historic Eastbury Village Flood Prevention Association (EVFPA) scheme is nearing completion.

And to mark the achievement, Newbury MP Richard Benyon will join villagers, representatives from the association, the Environment Agency (EA) and West Berkshire Council in burying a time capsule for future generations.

A spokeswoman for the EVFPA, Liz Goodman, said: “One of the challenges of delivering the scheme was to ensure that there was an ongoing, 100- year maintenance plan in place for future generations.

“We know this structure should last for a long time. So to celebrate the fact we are getting close to the end, and bearing in mind this will be supported for a century, we are going to be burying a time capsule.

“We have asked residents of Eastbury to submit short messages on what they would like a future generation to read and we are also running a competition for those aged under 16 years to submit a picture, poem or essay which depicts village life today.”

The ceremony will take place in the village at 1.30pm on Friday, March 20.

Mr Benyon said: “This flood scheme is a credit to the EVFPA, who have worked tirelessly for years and whose efforts will ensure Eastbury is better protected from flooding in the future.

“I have seen for myself on a number of occasions the effect flooding can have on the village and I look forward to returning to bury the time capsule.”

EA project manager Nick Leishman said “We are proud of our contribution to this scheme that will reduce the risk of flooding for the residents of Eastbury.

“This flood alleviation scheme has been built because of successful partnership work and the dedication of the local community.”

The scheme will consist of a throttle and a bund, and cost £400,000, of which the community raised £60,000 through donations, fundraising and grants.

During the last round of flooding in January and February 2014, Eastbury was badly hit, with several homes flooded by groundwater welling up between floorboard.

Some families were evacuated and the Eastbury Plough became an impromptu community centre and post office.

A full opening ceremony for the scheme is expected in the early summer.

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