Bassetlaw council leader calls for Government to 'overhaul the system' to secure more flooding funding

Watch more of our videos on Shots! 
and live on Freeview channel 276
Visit Shots! now
In the wake of recent storms, councils across the East Midlands are calling for more funding to protect against flooding.

Following A National Audit Office (NAO) report which confirms that the region is losing out on much-needed funding to protect against flooding, East Midlands Councils (EMC), a body which represents local authorities across the region, is calling on the Government to update the model for investment in flood defences.

The NAO’s analysis of the Environment Agency’s investment programme confirms that the East Midlands receives almost the lowest level funding per property at risk at £3,227, despite large areas of the region being vulnerable to fluvial (river), surface water, and coastal flooding.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

This compares unfavourably to North East which receives almost 4 times as much at £12,563 per property and the North West at £10,204.

The River Ryton after flooding in October 2023.The River Ryton after flooding in October 2023.
The River Ryton after flooding in October 2023.
Read More
In photos: Areas in and around Worksop most affected by flooding from Storm Babe...

Coun James Naish, EMC executive board member and leader of Bassetlaw District Council, said: “The NAO report clearly shows that it is time to overhaul the funding model for flood defences.

“According to Environment Agency data, just 120 extra properties across Derbyshire, Leicestershire and Nottinghamshire were protected from flooding in 2022/23. This is a much lower figure than in other more affluent parts of the country.

“This is despite East Midlands counties being some of the areas worst hit by recent storms and being promised millions of pounds of extra investment to make them more resilient.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

"Our communities are no longer willing to be treated as collateral damage for funding failures. It is time for the Government to overhaul the system to make sure that the shackles blocking the Environment Agency are broken, so they can invest where there is a demonstrable need to reduce frequent flooding.”

In recent months, the East Midlands has battled Storm Babet, Storm Henk, Storm Isha, and Storm Jocelyn, which have caused major disruption due to flooding, leading to major evacuations, emergency responses and clean-up operations.

EMC has been warning about the dangers of increased flooding for some time, producing a major report with the Met Office in 2015 (Changing Nature of Flooding in the East Midlands) which outlined the key challenges facing region over the next decades, and areas where an enhanced response will be required to protect against flooding.