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‘Making Cornwall a showpiece for flooding resilience’

Whatever winter storms lie ahead, Cornwall is mounting its biggest ever campaign to keep properties watertight

A new £1m campaign will launch this autumn to help residents and businesses in Cornwall make their properties flood resistant.

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The campaign begins with the Defra-funded and Cornwall Council led Property Flood Resilience (PFR) Pathfinder Project. At the end of October a specially designed Be Flood Ready Pod exhibition trailer will be visiting Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly.

There is also a series of free workshops for businesses across the SW running until next Spring, set up by climate change consultancy Climate Vision, to help traders to understand their personal flood risk and demonstrate the equipment and staff training that could make them more resilient.

The campaign will also feature radio advertising about flood protection, running on commercial radio.

It’s not all about business either - there are also grants for helping to deliver property flood resilience to households in Cornwall, using a mix of £135k of Cornwall Council capital funding and match funding of £150k applied for from the Environment Agency.

A further application for Cornwall Council and Defra funding for 2021 to 2027 has already begun with global natural and built asset design firm Arcadis as the managing agents.

Cornwall Council’s Cabinet Member for Environment and Public Protection, Rob Nolan, said: “All these strands of activity are coming together this Autumn and Winter to allow us to make Cornwall a showpiece for flooding resilience. For too long many locations have suffered repeated flooding events, and the misery they bring to residents, commerce, even to road and rail transport.”

“But we now have the means, expertise and energy to create an unstoppable surge in innovation and problem-solving. Just look at the £34 million St Austell Bay Resilient Regeneration (StARR) Project - a multi-agency partnership which will use a mix of engineering and natural solutions to mitigate flood risk in areas such as Par and St. Blazey. Work like this on a whole catchment area will grab the world’s attention, encourage investment, and make flood-prone communities better places to work, live and play.”

“Stop to think – how could I make my home or business premises less vulnerable to flooding or the effects of climate change? If you don’t have a clear answer, then seek out our Resilience team, any of our ‘Be Flood Ready’ events, or click on the websites. One day you may be very glad indeed that you did!”

Despite Covid restrictions having limited public engagement opportunities so far this year, Cornwall Council and its partners are likely to have drawn down almost £1m from Defra for these linked flooding resilience initiatives.