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39 Engineer Regiment fix repeatedly-flooding section of Dava Way at Clashdhu Cutting


By Garry McCartney

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Flooding at Clashdhu.
Flooding at Clashdhu.

LOCAL soldiers helped volunteers deal with flooding issues on a popular walk from Forres to Grantown-on-Spey.

Kinloss Barrack's 39 Engineer Regiment offered to help the Dava Way Association (DWA) clear a section of path near the Clashdhu Cutting.

DWA secretary Malcolm Campbell explained the section of walk north of Clashdhu Cutting has always been prone to flooding after heavy rain and in early February, volunteers spent a day clearing blocked drains and creating a culvert to ensure water flowed freely under an estate track.

Mr Campbell said: "The Clashdhu Cutting has always been a problem area, so when 39 Royal Engineer Regiment offered to assist the DWA, as a community project, we jumped at the chance to address the drainage issues in the cutting itself.

"A platoon from 48 Squadron commanded by Lt Cameron Lalley arrived with shovels, picks and a large JCB tractor. They cleared ditches and used the JCB to create a more effective ditch in the cutting to relieve problems with surface water."

The army JCB.
The army JCB.

Clashdhu Cutting is over 300m long and, while they were not able to complete the work in one day, the platoon managed to complete over 100m of ditch.

Digging out the route.
Digging out the route.

DWA chairman Neil Sinclair pointed out that it would have taken many days for civilian volunteers to clear the same stretch with only shovels and picks.

The work provided the army with training experience of using heavy equipment. The soldiers recognised other opportunities for training on the 24-mile Dava Way such as cutting back overhanging trees and vegetation.

A 39 Engineer Regiment spokeswoman confirmed they were happy to help improve the water drainage.

She said: "It benefits our community and provided valuable training for our Royal Engineers. Our thanks to the DWA, it has been a great experience for us and a pleasure to work on this special route."

Creating a culvert using a new trailer.
Creating a culvert using a new trailer.
Neil Sinclair surveying the new ditch.
Neil Sinclair surveying the new ditch.
Water running freely through new culvert.
Water running freely through new culvert.

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