22 May 2015 | Online since 2003



7 March 2014|News,Property News

Paterson announces plans to protect Somerset


Homes and businesses in Somerset will be better protected from the risk of flooding under a new action plan outlined by Environment Secretary Owen Paterson today.

The plan was commissioned by the Environment Secretary in January after exceptional weather caused large scale flooding and aims to improve resilience against floods on the Somerset Levels.

The Country Land and Business Association welcomed Environment Secretary Owen Paterson’s written ministerial statement on reducing the threat of future flooding.

Drawn up by local partners in the region, including the local councils, MPs, businesses and local residents, it sets out a number of initiatives that will ensure better protection against floods in the future, including:

- Immediate plans to dredge 8km of the Rivers Parrett and Tone as soon as it is safe and practical to do so;

- Making some temporary flood defences and pumping sites permanent;
- Helping local partners take more responsibility for water management on the Levels through a new Somerset rivers board;
- Supporting farmers to manage flood risk better; and
- Ensuring new developments meet the highest standards for water and drainage.

CLA President Henry Robinson said: “We welcome the publication of the plan containing the views of local authorities, government agencies and other stakeholders and trust Mr Paterson will give it his full support.

“Mr Paterson’s written ministerial statement this morning and in particular his commitment to dredging - initially of eight kilometre stretches of the Brue and Parrett - is also good news, as is the pledge to review the need for further dredging.

“We strongly suspect further dredging will be required, not least because land in the Axe and Brue catchments has also been under water for many months.

“However, dredging is only part of the answer. Landowners, local authorities, the Environment Agency and drainage boards all need to work together on this.”

Mr Robinson reiterated the CLA’s call for a sustainable and funded system in which costs, rights and responsibilities are fairly shared.

He said: “We welcome the proposal that a Somerset Rivers Board with responsibility for future governance should be put in place and, as the representative of landowners in the catchment areas, we look forward to playing a part in it.

“Active land management within the upper, middle and lower catchments has an important role to play in future mitigation of the impacts of flooding.”

An extra £500,000 is also being made available from the Severe Weather Recovery Fund to help people on the Somerset levels get back on their feet and prevent future flooding, in addition to funding provided to local authorities under the Bellwin Scheme.

Water levels continue to fall on the Somerset Levels as the country’s largest ever pumping operation continues, but one severe flood warning remains in force in the area as there are still properties flooded, roads closed and rail links disrupted.

In Hampshire, continuing minor river flooding is expected from the River Test in Romsey, the Somborne Stream in Kings Somborne and from the rivers Itchen and Meon.

Groundwater levels also remain exceptionally high across much of the south of England, causing a continued risk of flooding around Croydon as well as in Hambledon, Basingstoke and Lower Farringdon in Hampshire, where properties could see more flooding this week.

High groundwater levels are also increasing the flood risk in parts of Dorset, Wiltshire, West Sussex, West Berkshire, South Gloucestershire, Kent, Surrey and Brighton and Hove. The Environment Agency is supporting local authorities and utility companies as they respond to incidents of groundwater flooding.

Download




Comments


No comments posted yet. Be the first to post a comment

To post comment without approval login or register

Display name

Please enter your name

Email (optional)
Comment

Please enter your comment

Post Comment

Your comment submitted successfully.Please wait for admin approval.

Some error on your process.Please try one more time.



Jobs


14 May 2015
Medical Receptionist
Part time receptionist required to cover surgeries in central St Albans and Jersey Farm for three 5 1/2 hour afternoon sessio...

15 May 2015
Tyre Bay fitter
Farol Ltd. have an opening for a Tyre Bay Fitter. Due to continued expansion we require a Tyre Fitter to join the team at our...

13 May 2015
Conference Bookings Agent
To assist Events and Conference Bookings Manager in effective dairy management by adhering to conference office best practice...

8 May 2015
EQUINE EVENT TECHNICIAN
The successful candidate will be part of a dedicated and highly motivated yard team delivering all levels of competition, inc...

5 May 2015
Multi-Skilled Operator
A family-owned company with a turnover of 1.8 billion Euros and is a leading European fruit transformation and chilled dairy ...



Top stories you may have missed
15 May 2015 | Arable

Scotland’s Rural Affairs Secretary Richard Lochhead is calling on the Europ...


15 May 2015 | Finance

As the country settles down following the turmoil of the general election, ...


14 May 2015 | Animal Health

New research from the Universities of Bristol and Cambridge has found that ...


13 May 2015 | Animal Health

A new publication to help farmers prevent sheep lameness and offer advice o...


12 May 2015 | Agri Safety

The Farmers’ Union of Wales is putting the spotlight on Liver fluke at next...


5 May 2015 | News

The UK is now third in the global rankings for utility-scale solar energy a...


29 April 2015 | Agri Safety

A recent Rural Watch demonstration and information event gave Farmers’ Unio...


24 April 2015 | Meat Processing

Retailers should confirm their commitments to sourcing UK lamb this season,...


15 April 2015 | Meat Processing

A leading retailer has apologised after selling imported lamb in a Borders ...


9 April 2015 | Finance

The time has come for landlords to expect to see reductions in farm rents, ...