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Allerdale flood defence scheme success

Flooding in Cockermouth, December 2015

Over 1,100 property owners have benefitted from a flood defence scheme organised by Allerdale Borough Council.

The residential and business properties all flooded in December 2015. Their owners were therefore eligible for a Property-Level Resilience grant of up to £5000 to help protect their properties in the event of a future flood. Allerdale Borough Council administered the grant with the money coming from central government.

In total owners of 1,164 properties received funding when the scheme closed at the end of March 2018 which equates to nearly 70% of eligible properties. The total paid out is £4,544,909. The Council has one outstanding application which it hopes will be sorted soon.

Carni McCarron-Holmes, Executive member with responsibility for emergency planning, said: “I’m really pleased that we have been able to help these people in the devastating aftermath of Storm Desmond. This has been a true team effort by the Council from health and housing, property services, finance, communications and customer services.”

She added: “In many ways I hope these defences never need to be used. However, it is always best to be prepared if we do have another flood event. I’d also advise everyone to regularly check their defences and practice putting them in position.”

The grant was designed to cover the cost of installing defences to make the property more resilient to any future flooding and which would not normally be paid for by the property owners insurance company. This could be flood gates, moving electrical sockets and boilers, or introducing non-return valves.

Applicants were also able to apply for top-up grants from the Cumbria Community Foundation. Many also took advantage of the services of the Business Emergency Response Group (BERG) who helped them apply for the grant.

The grants are part of the Council’s work in helping communities in Allerdale recover from the floods of 2015, as well as become more resilient to the effects of flooding if it occurs in the future. There are now flood sacks available at key locations throughout the borough ready to be distributed to residents if needed. More details are on the Council’s website.

Allerdale Borough Council has also been working with others on the Cumbria Strategic Flood Partnership. See the partnerships’ website for more information: http://www.cumbriastrategicfloodpartnership.org/index.html

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