On 14th March, The Eddlston Water project was visited by a tem of 14 researchers from 4 universities across Japan who together work on a catchment approach to flood risk management. Representing a variety of disciplines, the research team is led by Yukihiro Shimatani, Distinguished Professor at the Prefectural University of Kumamoto and are conducting catchment-based flood management research in Japan. In recent years, Japan has experienced major floods, possibly due to climate change, and flood control measures that target river basins are being seen as necessary. In response, his team which is funded by the Japanese government have been conducting large-scale research for 10 years working now with industry, academia and others. Recognising that with the Flood Risk Management Act (2009), Scotland was one of the first countries in the world to adopt a sustainable approach to flood risk reduction through using Natural Flood Management, his team were keen to learn more and see the progress being made. The team have been spending a week visiting key sites across the UK, with Tweed Forum’s Eddleston Water their only location in Scotland.
The visit to Eddleston was hosted by Chris Spray starting with a presentation and workshop discussion at Cringletie. This was followed by a ‘walkshop’ along the new path looking at the temporary flood storage ponds and re-meandering measures at Kidston Mill and Nether Kidston. After a working lunch, the group visited the re-meanders at Lake Wood and further downstream, noting the difference between meander sections in terms of habitat structure, ecological and hydrological impacts and cost-benefits