Toodbrook Repair plan Tumblebay artist impression March 2021 

The Canal & River Trust charity has unveiled a permanent repair plan for restoring Toddbrook Reservoir in Whaley Bridge, England, UK.

The repair plan involves building a new side channel weir, ‘tumble bay’, spillway channel and stilling basin on the northern, Sailing Club side of the dam, at an estimated cost of between £12 – £16 million. The auxiliary spillway, which was damaged in summer 2019, will be de-commissioned and the dam slope grassed

The Trust, which cares for 2000 miles of waterways, is hoping that work can start at the end of 2021, subject to planning permission. The work is expected to take two years to complete.

Toodbrook reservoir, which supplies water to the Peak Forest and Macclesfield canals, has been out of action and near empty of water since the spillway was damaged. Ahead of the permanent repair, the Trust, and its contractors Kier, have carried out a major project to make safe the damaged spillway and add a protective waterproof nib to the dam crest.

The long-term repair design was informed by feedback from residents who took part in the public consultation last September, when two different options were put forward from an initial 13 potential proposals which had been considered by the design team.

Working with specialist engineering design consultants Arup, the Trust’s project team has carried out extensive technical investigations and design work, listened to all feedback and tried to accommodate the best engineering option within the landscape. They continue to develop the details of their proposals to ensure the most effective design solution is adopted.

A second public consultation into the proposed plan will be organised for later in the spring, probably online, in advance of a planning application to High Peak Borough Council this summer.

The construction project on the dam will be followed by works to the inlet cascade, at the far end of the reservoir, to increase its resilience to high flows from the Todd Brook stream. 

Subject to planning permission, the Canal & River Trust is hoping to start work on site at the end 2021 and for the reservoir to be re-opened to the public in early 2024. High volume pumps will remain in the reservoir to manage water levels until the end of the restoration project.

To view more detailed information about the repair plans, please go to the Canal & River Trust website:

Toddbrook Spillway Sketch View – Top of Dam