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Powell's C of E School, Cirencester


Powell's C of E Primary School, which is situated close to The River Churn, has previously suffered the effects of flooding; damage was caused to the forest area and playground, and the school was also forced to close. It became apparent that the school required flood mitigation to protect it from any future flooding events.


The Self Activating Flood Barrier (SAFB) and Timber Flood Gate were chosen as the optimum solutions that would best meet the specific requirements of the site.

The SAFB measured 3.3m x 1.2m.  A passive solution, it requires no human, mechanical or electrical intervention to operate. The barrier uses the power of the approaching flood water to deploy while also remaining invisible and fully self-protected in non-flood conditions.

The SAFB for this project has a steel basin, which is strong enough to withstand the light traffic which will drive over the barrier on a daily basis.

In addition, the top of the barrier was designed with anti-slip protection, so it’s safe for the school’s young pupils to cross over.

The operation of the SAFB relies on a guide rail at each end of the aperture to seal against, under flood conditions. Again, because the school’s pupils will cross the threshold of the barrier, the rails could pose a health & safety risk, so bespoke cladding was designed to cover the guide rails on a day-to-day basis but also raise with the barrier in a flood event. 

In addition to the SAFB, another entrance to the school grounds was best suited to the Timber Flood Gate solution; a double leaf gate measuring 1.8m x 1.1m was required. 

The Timber Flood Gate is a passive solution; once the operator shuts the gate, it seals and protects the school from flooding up to the height of the gate. The Timber Flood Gate is easily closed and the drop down bolts and locks are used to form a strong connection.