PM lobbied for vital new flood defence funds

A cross-party delegation of MPs from across the Humber took their concerns over long term flood defence funding for the Isle and Humber region, straight to the Prime Minister.

Friday, 18th July 2014, 3:22 pm
Andrew Percy MP

The meeting was led by Isle MP Andrew Percy and followed publication of a report by all four Councils in the Humber, pressing the need for £888 million investment in to local defences over 10 plus years, to provide a standard of one in 200 year protection.

Current cash allocation from the government for local flood defences includes a recently announced £13.3 million for the Lincolnshire Lakes and Trent villages flood scheme and £5 million to raise the defences at Reedness. But it is not enough.

Mr Percy said: “When the Humber Flood Catchment Strategy was created back in 2008 it was thought that about £300 million would be needed over the next decade to maintain our defences. Following the report commissioned by the four Councils, working with the Environment Agency, it looks as though the cost could be upwards of £888 million.

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“We didn’t expect the Prime Minister to write the cheque when we met him as this is very much the start of our campaign. Significant sums of funding for flood defences are coming in. Our pitch as a cross-party group of MPs is that with the second highest risk of flooding in the country, the Humber needs to be viewed in isolation.”

He continued: “The Prime Minister has assured us that the report we presented to him will now be considered and, crucially, it will also be assessed by Treasury. He has also asked us to meet the Minister designated as Flood Envoy for the Humber, Robert Goodwill MP. We will be setting this meeting up as the next stage of the campaign.”

MPs of both parties and from both sides of the estuary are committed to working together on this issue. We are not seeking overnight funding, but for a long-term commitment that takes into account the value of the Humber to the UK because of our port structure, power generation, petro-chemicals and strong agricultural position within the UK.”