£2.9m boost for community flood resilience

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Three areas across England are to receive an additional £2.9m for enhancing their resilience to flooding of homes, DEFRA has confirmed.

 

Cornwall and central England can go ahead. Each will receive up to £700,000 "to boost research into, and uptake of, property-level measures which can better protect homes and businesses from flooding".

The projects, chosen via a competitive evaluation process, will support new research initiatives, together with demonstration centres and advice portals aimed at helping people learn about benefits associated with installing measures in homes that are capable of substantially reducing potential impacts from flooding. DEFRA adds that the money remaining "will be used to fund further research, support project delivery and evaluation as well as initiatives to share the findings and lessons learned from the three projects across the rest of the country".

Property-level flood resilience measures vary, but often include installation of flood doors and hard floors, as well as ensuring that electric connections and equipment are raised above ground level in homes. The aim is to substantially reduce the time residents need to spend away from flood-damaged homes.

One of the three areas to be awarded funding is also covered by the Oxford-Cambridge Pathfinder scheme, led by Northamptonshire County Council. This focuses on the delivery of "one million high-quality homes" by 2050 across a wide area, stretching into neighbouring counties. Ten communities are to be selected to participate in the project, with resources to be prioritised for promotion and installation of property flood resilience in those areas most vulnerable to flooding.

The Yorkshire Future Flood Resilience Pathfinder project, to be delivered by City of York Council, will cooperate with communities, planning and construction professionals, as well as the insurance and construction sector. DEFRA says the initiative will also promote uptake of property flood resilience measures within the Yorkshire Regional Flood and Coastal Committee area, and establish a community hub and learning lab. It will work with existing local projects and initiatives, as well as helping provide a large-scale training programme.

The third, headed up by Cornwall County Council, is the South West Partnership project . This initiative addresses local innovation aimed at enhancing take-up of property flood resilience measures. It is to set up a demonstration hub and web portal, streamline processes, with a view to boosting flood resilience of communities across Devon, Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly.

Commenting on the initiative, environment minister Thérèse Coffey said: "I am delighted to award funding to the pathfinder flood resilience projects in the Ox-Cam arc, Yorkshire and the South West." She added: "I expect the councils and organisations involved will increase the take up of property resilience measures by homeowners and businesses, making their properties safer, and quicker to return to if flooding does happen."

For more flood related news visit www.environment-analyst.com or attend Environment Analyst’s conference ‘Flood Risk Management: Resilience and Adaptation’ on 5th December 2019.


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