Relief plans for four flood hotspots

Pilot protection planswill be developed at four flooding hotspots in Buckinghamshire thanksto a successful county council bid for government cash.

Communities at Bishopstone, Saunderton, Hughenden Valley and Monks Risborough will share £83,000 of Department for Environment Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) money to fund flooding research and feasibility studies.

They’ll work with County Council flood prevention experts to think out of the box, finding innovative ways to protect homes and businesses from surface and ground water using natural flood management techniques, temporary defences and equipment that can be stored and used locally.

The intention is to develop robust protection and emergency plans from which other areas can learn,and that could be combined to create a watertight case forconsideration in the Government’s £2.3bn six-year capital investment programme.

Karen Fisher, Buckinghamshire County Council’s Strategic Flood Management Team Leader, said the money wouldpump-prime communities at risk of flooding to produce theirown studies in a way that couldn’t otherwise have been afforded.

These wouldprovide the County Council with evidence and research to apply for major government funding to tackle flood management right across Buckinghamshire, she said.

Buckinghamshire County Council was one of six councils that competed successfully with 22 others in a bid for a share in £500,000 of DEFRA’s support.

Warren Whyte, Cabinet Member for Environment and Planning said: ‘Thanks to the initiative of the flooding team, we have been successful in obtaining these additional government funds. It is great news for our small communities as these pilots will give them a direct role in planning to better protect people’s homes and businesses, and be a huge help in our application for further flood protection funding.’