The government has put into place an action plan aimed at protecting Cumbrian communities from future flood dangers…
The government has set out the Cumbria Flood Action Plan, which aims to protect 4,300 homes in the region from rising waters.
Cumbria has already seen some £150m government funding invested in repairing the infrastructure and towards flooded households and businesses following severe flooding last year. It is hoped the new plan can deliver actions to manage rivers and land in the region to prevent future damage.
The plan shows how the government will use £72m funding to protect 4,300 homes; restore 350 hectares of peatland to ensure water stays upstream for longer; manage more efficiently local reservoirs to enable more flood water to be held; and work with the community to ensure land above villages can be changed to reduce flood risk to residents.
The plan also examines how to reduce flood risks in the three areas most severely impacted by Storm Desmond. This comprises of the Eden, Derwent, and Kent & Leven. This will include measures such as planting trees, restoring river bends, and building flood walls in towns.
Floods Minister Rory Stewart said: “This plan is what Cumbria needs to help protect its businesses, people and infrastructure from flooding – now and over the longer term.
“This is largely thanks to the incredible spirit of the Cumbrian people, with local groups, local authorities, the Environment Agency and landowners all working with us to find the best answers for every area.
“The government has committed up to £72 million to protect Cumbria from flooding and this plan uses local expertise to identify where that money will be best spent to benefit communities, by re-examining river systems from source to sea.”
Environment Agency Flood Risk Manager Andy Brown said the plan represented a change in the way flood risks in Cumbria are managed. “It sees local communities at the heart of the process, working with organisations to reduce flood risk along the length of Cumbrian river catchments, from the Fells to the coast.
“The development of the long-term plan relies on continuing to work with the communities and farmers who live alongside these rivers and have experienced flooding at first hand. This is your opportunity to get involved and help make Cumbria more resilient to flooding.”