School of Geography

A Flood History: Witham, Trent, Yorkshire Ouse by PhD Student, Josephine Westlake

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Josephine Westlake, PhD Research Student at the School of Geography, currently studying the effects of non-stationarity on the flooding regimes of the Witham, Trent and Yorkshire Ouse rivers.

In addition to her research, Josephine works in collaboration with the School’s academic staff to deliver the Undergraduate Geography laboratory sessions.

Josephine’s research is titled, “A Flood History: Witham, Trent, Yorkshire Ouse and how we can use this to protect people and property’:

Interest in predicting UK flood events continues to grow following an increase in both the frequency and magnitude of recorded floods over the last 20 years. However current methods for analysing flood risk are based on statistical extrapolation of gauged flow records that are rarely longer than 50 years on average. It is also well known from historical sources and floodplain sedimentary records that much larger floods have occurred before modern flow records began in the 20th century. This project aims to address these problems by reconstructing multi-centennial length flood histories and undertaking long term flood frequency analysis (FFA) on three UK river systems: the Witham, Trent and Yorkshire Ouse. It will extend the flood series record by incorporating historical and palaeoflood (floodplain sedimentary archives) data into a single flood series and assess non-stationarity arising from climate and land-use change and modification of channel capacity.

Take a look at the current research happening at the School of Geography.

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