£2m pledge to keep flood water at bay

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ABOUT 60 new flood defence schemes are to be completed in the East Riding after the local authority agreed to spend more than £2m to reduce the threat of surface water flooding.

The projects are part of East Riding Council’s second programme of flood mitigation works in areas worst affected by the devastating floods of 2007.

The authority said the funding was part of its earlier fiscal stimulus aimed at bringing forward investment to improve infrastructure and assist the local economy. A further £500,000 of match funding has been obtained from partners and the community.

A total of £4.5m has already been spent on 160 schemes, and a further 22 are set to be completed by June.

Coun Symon Fraser, portfolio holder for the environment, housing and planning, said: “The council has been closely involved with partners in many larger flood management schemes but these in the main are targeted at bigger centres of population and have more chance of attracting national funding help.

“However, local flood mitigation work is also very important in the East Riding where many communities at risk live in small settlements which do not meet the criteria for national funding that is targeted at the urban and more densely populated areas.

“We have worked very closely with local people, bringing together their own invaluable knowledge and the council’s expertise, to ensure that the flood mitigation work proposed is effective in helping build more resilient communities.

“The money available for local flood mitigation schemes has been oversubscribed but the council will wherever possible be looking for some joint funding for these schemes, which would then allow some other schemes that have missed out to be included on the programme.”

A total of 6,019 homes and 93 businesses in the East Riding were damaged in the 2007 floods.