Rolleston, Newark-on-Trent

Completed May 2017


Ardent was commissioned by Arena Racing Company to undertake 1D:2D hydraulic modelling and detailed design of a flood alleviation scheme to reduce the risk of flooding to Southwell Racecourse.. The scheme received full planning permission in June 2016. Ardent undertook the detail design and site supervision for the works, which were completed in May 2017. The sustainable scheme has delivered local environmental and economic benefits as well as reducing flood risk.


Southwell Racecourse is located immediately east of Rolleston, near Newark-on-Trent, Nottinghamshire. The racecourse is operated by Arena Racing Company (ARC) has existed since the 1870s and provides an important economic benefit for the local area. It is situated in the floodplain of the River Greet (flood zone 2 and 3) and suffered from three major flood events between 1995 and 2012 which resulted in significant damage and temporary closure of the racecourse. Due to the cost of repairs, which resulted in an increase in insurance premium and excess, the viability of the racecourse was called into question by its owners.

Ardent was presented with the challenge of delivering a flood alleviation scheme within the floodplain to protect the racecourse from flooding without increasing flood risk to third parties.

Working closely with the Client in terms of operation requirements, Ardent undertook 1D-2D hydraulic modelling and developed a scheme to protect the racecourse from fluvial flooding. At each stage of the design process, the Environment Agency, Trent Valley Internal Drainage Board and Newark and Sherwood Borough Council were consulted. The scheme comprised the following elements of work:

• Approximately 4km of flood defence bunds
• A 4.0ha wetland area
• A 1.10ha flood attenuation area
• A 12ha flood cell area
• Various ditch improvements (widening, regrading and new ditches)
• Various flow control structures (culverts, weirs and spillways)