£586,00 of Government funding to help householders in Mid Cornwall protect their homes against future flooding incidents
Last updated: 12/05/2011
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A bid by Cornwall Council for funding to help
people affected by the flooding which devastated parts of Mid
Cornwall last November to protect their homes against future
incidents has been awarded £586,000 by the Environment Agency.
A review of the flooding carried out by the
Environment Agency and Cornwall Council suggested that the affected
communities were unlikely to qualify for community level flood
defence schemes which would cost millions of pounds.
Earlier this year the Environment Agency
announced that it was making £2 million available nationally to
help householders in locations such as Mid Cornwall to make their
properties more resistant to flooding through measures such as
airbrick covers, floodgates and non return valves to stop
floodwater entering homes through pipes. Under the Property
Level Flood Protection grant scheme eligible households can receive
up to £3,750 towards the costs of installing such measures plus a
£500 survey fee.
All local authorities were invited to apply
for the funding on behalf of communities and individuals at risk
and officers from Cornwall Council worked closely with local
Environment Agency staff to compile bids for many of the
communities affected by the flooding in November.
The Council, which submitted bids on behalf of
homes in 16 sites, including St Blazey, Lostwithiel, Mevagissey, St
Austell, Tregrehan and Par Moor, Lerryn, Polmassick, Portholland,
Holmbush, Portloe, Tregony, Coverack, Charlestown, Millpool,
Pentewan and Tregorrick, has now been told that it will receive
£586,000 – 25% of the total amount available.
News of the funding has been welcomed by Alec
Robertson, the Leader of Cornwall Council, who wrote a letter to
the Environment Agency supporting the bid. Letters of support
were also sent by Julian German, the Council’s Cabinet Member for
Waste Protection, Climate Change and Historic Environment, and by
local Cornwall Councillors.
Support for the bids also came from local
councillors attending the recent Community Flood Recovery Group
meetings which covered areas including Mevagissey, Pentewan,
Polmassick, Par Moor, St Blazey and Lostwithiel.
Unfortunately, although Cornwall has actually
received 25% of the total funding, not all the bids have been
“As there were only limited funds available
the Environment Agency prioritised the bids according to a strict
criteria, including flood risk, flooding history, the level of
community engagement and whether a community flood plan or warden
system would be in operation “ said David Owens, Assistant Head of
Service for Environment and Waste.
“Although we have received funding to support
137 properties in five areas, including Lostwithiel, St Blazey,
Mevagssiey, Tregrehan and Par Moor and Polmassick, there are a
number of other sites which have not been allocated funding”.
“We appreciate that these householders will be
disappointed and will be talking to the Environment Agency about
what action can be taken in these areas over the next few
“I am delighted that we have been successful
in winning a quarter of the national funding to help residents in
Cornwall” said Council Leader Alec Robertson. “While it is
disappointing that not all our applications were successful I
appreciate that there was only limited funding available.
“We will now be working with the Environment
Agency to come up with ways to help the people in these
areas. One of the ideas being considered is setting up a fund
with the Agency and we will be meeting to discuss this in the next
“The Environment Agency is working hard across
the South West to reduce the risk of flooding, provide better
protection and give early warnings. These grants will
enable more people in more communities to protect their homes
and possessions,’ said the Environment Agency’s Flood and Coastal
Risk Manager Geoff Boyd.
‘Individuals and businesses can help
themselves by making their properties more resistant to flooding
using products like the ones Local
Authorities will be purchasing with the grant money announced
today. The relatively small cost of these products could save
the many thousands of pounds it costs in repairs and lost
possessions in the event of a flood.’
Each affected property will need to be
surveyed to asses what measures are needed to improve its
resilience to flooding and the costs of the works agreed. In
some cases “top-up” funding may be needed which might involve a
contribution from the owner of the property before the full grant
can be allocated.
The Council and the Environment Agency are
also finalising plans to stage a Flood Fair in June to help raise
awareness of the measures people can take to protect their homes against
flooding. This will include examples of equipment which
can be installed in individual homes. The dates of the fairs
have provisionally been set for June 22 and 23 June and full
details of the venues will be publicised as soon as they have been
Story posted 12 May 2011