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North Somerset villages most at risk from flooding

By cfayfineran  |  Posted: December 17, 2013

  • North Somerset villages most at risk from flooding

  • North Somerset villages most at risk from flooding

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Fifteen villages across North Somerset have been identified as most at risk from flooding in a new blueprint.

North Somerset Council is drawing up a flood risk management strategy to look at what measures can be taken to prevent flooding in the future.

Areas including Backwell, Claverham, Congresbury and Portbury have been named amongst those most in danger of flooding.

The new strategy will set out how the council, working with other organisations such as the Environment Agency and the public, will manage flooding – from surface run-off, ordinary watercourses and groundwater – across the district.

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Last year was the wettest on record in England and the second wettest in the UK since records began.

The council received 1,700 reports of flooding in three months – the equivalent to what is usually dealt with in three years.

There were more than 450 internal flooding incidents and more than 350 external flooding incidents reported and over 550 roads affected.

At the time the authority had four jetters working round the block to clear blocked drains and gullies.

Council chiefs said the freak weather placed 'severe pressure' on the authority's resources and meant it was forced to prioritise work.

A number of properties in Congresbury were flooded as a result of blocked drains and Portbury's High Street found itself under several inches of water on numerous occasions.

People were also put on alert that they may have to evacuate their homes after the flood storage ponds at Summer Lane, Weston-super-Mare started to overtop, putting around 50 nearby homes at risk of flooding.

The strategy has now gone out to consultation with local people being urged to have their say on the council's plans to limit flooding in the future.

North Somerset Council executive member for environment, Councillor Peter Bryant, said: "There has been a long history of flooding in the area, and the events of 2012 served as an untimely reminder of the impacts of flooding on people, property and infrastructure in the area.

"Since those floods we have carried out many local schemes to manage the risk of flooding in the future."

The strategy comes just weeks after the authority announced it is to spend an additional 1.7 million – ten times what is normally in its budget – on clearing gullies and drains.

The consultation runs for ten weeks and people can take part at www.n-somerset.gov.uk/LFRMSconsult.

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