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Government pumps £62m flood funding into English regions

Flooding / Shutterstock_176973317

Environment secretary Theresa Villiers has announced a new round of flood defence investment for communities across Yorkshire, Cumbria, the North East and the South East of England.

Thirteen projects across England will benefit from a share of over £62 million, which as well as helping to develop existing flood defences, will boost economic regeneration and increase prosperity in those areas.

Many of the projects are aimed at communities that suffered from flooding during winter 2015. More than 3,000 properties flooded in the West Yorkshire valley during the 2015 floods, leaving communities in the area badly affected.

In total, more than 9,004 homes will be better protected against flooding through this round of funding. The extra money is in addition to the government’s commitment to invest a record £2.6 billion over six years up to 2021 to better protect 300,000 homes across the country.

Funding will support the development of 11 projects in the Northern Powerhouse, including seven in Yorkshire, four in Cumbria and Lancashire, and two in the North East.

Jake Berry, minister of state for the Northern Powerhouse, said: “This new funding for flood defences in the north of England adds to the £5.4 billion already invested into the Northern Powerhouse to drive jobs and economic growth, and a record £13 billion to upgrade transport infrastructure across the North.

“We’re investing in public infrastructure so that local communities have the support and backing they need to flourish and seize all of the opportunities that come with leaving the European Union on the 31st October.”

Cumbria and Lancashire are due to receive the second-largest amount of funding, with £22.8 million now available to support four flood projects in Kendal, Egremont, Flimby and Preston and South Ribble.

This round of funding will also allocate £6.3 million to projects outside of the Northern Powerhouse, in Essex and Lincolnshire.

By the end of this year, the government said it will have set out measures to better prepare the country for flood and coastal erosion in a government policy statement. Informed by this policy, the Environment Agency would update its national strategy for flood and coastal erosion risk management, which sets out a long-term plan for tackling, preparing for, and adapting to the additional risks that climate change will bring.

Image credit | Shutterstock