Forthcoming opportunities to discover more and provide opinions on flood protection measures

The progression of a Flood Protection Scheme to reduce the flood risk to properties and wider infrastructure of Musselburgh continues with the commencement of the public consultations on the Outline Design in February 2023. Specifically, the next two meetings will be:

  • Tuesday 7 February – The Esksides Area Local Consultation Group; and
  • Wednesday 8 February – The Coastal Area Local Consultation Group.

Both meetings will take place at the Esk Rooms at The Brunton and will be from 6pm until 8pm.

The Scheme presented reports to meetings of East Lothian Council in August and October 2022.  Through these meetings the Council approved the Scheme’s revised Hydraulic Model which is now named Model C – and which is capable of defining the flood risk to the town.  An amendment to the August report by Musselburgh Councillors Shona McIntosh and Cher Cassini, which was approved in full by Council, instructed the Project Team to undertake consultation on the Outline Design and specifically a number of flood risk scenarios. 

The February consultations will provide detail on a number of flood risk scenarios and then provide detail on the likely heights of any new physical defences that would be required to provide protection against these flood risks. Following these events, the community can then engage on the level of risk they consider appropriate to defend against, and also on the choice and look of proposed defences.

The Project Team are now commencing the Outline Design and will present information on the design choices that need to be considered as the designers work to identify the best form of new physical defences, and also the specific location of the defences – along the length of the river Esk and along the coastal foreshore where the new defences require to be located. 

Conor Price, Project Manager, highlighted: “This is the beginning of the design of the Scheme.  We are excited that East Lothian Council confirmed the need for this flood protection scheme last autumn, and have instructed us to finally get on with the process of actually designing the defences.  It is our understanding that the people of the town are keen to see real design visions emerge from these consultations.  Our team will be there to continue listening to the people of Musselburgh, and in this instance I want to highlight that we are clear that they wish to see an environmentally rich solution tailored to the landscape and including as many nature-based solutions as possible.  The team will work to achieve this and will be tabling proposals to achieve a wider level of ‘River Restoration’ along the corridor of the River Esk, and Coastal Foreshore.”

Next week, during the consultation events, the Project Team will also be unveiling additional Design Meeting proposals to ensure a continuity of the design between now and the summer.  This is alongside the main Consultation Evenings, which were defined in the Consultation programme published before Christmas, and namely:

  • Tuesday 18 April – The Esksides Area Local Consultation Group;
  • Wednesday 19 April – The Coastal Area Local Consultation Group;
  • Thursday 20 April – The Edinburgh Road Local Area Consultation Group
  • Tuesday 20 June – Public Exhibition No. 2 – Day 1 – For Everyone; and
  • Wednesday 21 June – Public Exhibition No. 2 – Day 2 – For Everyone.

At the June event the initial Outline Design will be presented and individuals, businesses and other interested parties will have the opportunity to seek clarification on aspects of the Scheme and to provide feedback. This major consultation will see the unveiling of the proposed designs, and a 3D Animation will be available to maximise the potential for delivering a clear vision of how the flood protection scheme’s combination of physical defences, environmental changes, and river restoration will look within the town’s existing historic / build landscape.  The Project Team will then compile a report to allow work to begin on the revision of the Outline Design based on the feedback collected.

East Lothian Council Leader, Norman Hampshire, said: “It is vitally important that residents and businesses in Musselburgh have both the opportunities to seek clarification on the Flood Protection Scheme proposals and to have their views or concerns recorded. The design and eventual construction of a flood protection scheme is a complex process involving a range of factors and considerations. No final design has yet been produced as this will require input and approval of the town’s residents and key stakeholders. I would urge those interested to discover more and express their views at the upcoming events.”

Updated information on the progress of the Musselburgh Flood Protection Scheme, including a series of FAQs, is available on the website

Published: Wednesday, 1st February 2023