FLOOD protection volunteers in the Wee County were called to action in Alva amid heavy rainfall recently

Members of the Alva Community Resilience Team were alerted to a rapid rise in the water levels at Alva Burn as early as 7am on Friday, December 30, with their counterparts in Menstrie and Tillicoultry areas also monitoring their respective communities.

It was a close call in Alva, according to the group's Bryan Denny, who attended in a number of areas with volunteers – including a house which was at risk of water damage.

Bryan told the Advertiser: "On Friday, December 29, the alarm on our RiverTrack monitor activated at just after 7am following a very rapid rise in the main Alva Burn level from 5am.

"Members of ACRT deployed to check the burn to ensure the water remained in channel.

"The rainfall eased allowing members to deal with issues at the Silverburn and Burnhouse Farm Road due to water pouring from a field on the hill.

"Further issues were highlighted in the Cochrane Park due to a drain surging causing flooding to the car park and the to the cottage within the park.

"A property in Wharry Road also gave rise to concern due to floodwater in the garden which was threatening to enter the property.

"Neighbours and volunteers helped to sweep the water from the property saving it from any water damage."

It was a true team effort and members of ACRT later returned to Alva Burn where water levels rose to a new record of 845mm.

Thankfully, the water remained in the channel and the levels would later come down.

Bryan added: "This was a very close call, had this rain came two weeks earlier when there was issues due to snow melt it may well have been a very different situation similar to that of December 2020."

Down the road to the west, members of Menstrie Community Resilience Team were ready to deploy, but thankfully did not have to be called into action after what was a "few hours of nerves watching the levels increasing", said the group's James Bull.

Further along the Hillfoots, Tillicoultry, Devonside and Coalsnaughton Flood Group ((Tideco Tilly) were in a similar situation.

The group's Gail Walker said: "Volunteers monitored water levels both within the Tillicoultry Burn, which had risen significantly during the morning, and the River Devon, which was expected to peak at 6pm.

"Volunteers were deployed to Lower Mill Street at lunchtime in response to an amber and then red trigger on the burn.

"However, no further action was needed as the rain stopped and burn levels started to drop."

Gail and the team are currently on the lookout for volunteers.

The groups work with frontline services to support their communities during flooding events with training provided.

Those interested in joining in the Tillicoultry area can send a message to the Tideco Tilly page on Facebook.