Following the recent devastation caused by Storm Babet, the Government immediately announced that support will be made available through a scheme known as the Flood Recovery Framework, which is used in exceptional circumstances to support councils and communities following severe flooding.
Under these measures:
- Flooded households in affected areas can apply for up to £500.00 to give cash quickly to help with immediate costs.
- Households and businesses significantly affected by recent flooding will be eligible for 100 percent council tax and business rates relief for at least three months.
- Small-to-medium sized businesses in affected areas will be eligible for up to £2,500.00 from the Business Recovery Grant to help them return quickly to business as usual.
- Eligible flood-hit property owners will be able to apply for up to £5,000.00 to help make their homes and businesses more resilient to future flooding via the Property Flood Resilience Repair Grant Scheme.
Although this financial support is directly funded by the Government, Derbyshire County Council and Erewash Borough Council are jointly responsible for administering claims. For further information please visit www.erewash.gov.uk/latest-news-section/latest-news/1800-flooded-residents-can-get-500-in-aid.html.
In terms of the response to flooding, having listened to the concerns raised by residents and businesses in the areas affected, there are clearly a number of issues that must be resolved in order to prevent a similar situation occurring again in the future.
Specifically, the failure of The Environment Agency to provide sufficient warning about the risk of flooding along the Erewash Valley severely hampered the wider response effort.
I have therefore written directly to each of the relevant agencies, including Derbyshire Country Council, Erewash Borough Council, The Environment Agency and Severn Trent Water, to request that they each undertake an urgent review of their respective planning and deployment processes.
I am also calling on them to take immediate action to protect our community from the risk of flooding in the future, including improved cleaning and maintenance of public drains and gullies and the construction of new flood defences along the River Erewash.
More broadly, during the course of my conversations with residents and businesses affected by Storm Babet, it has become apparent that there remains some confusion as to which agencies are responsible for coordinating the response effort when a major flood event is declared.
I have therefore prepared a helpful guide to ‘who is responsible for what’ as defined in the Flood and Water Management Act 2010, with the information collated from various sources, including The Environment Agency, The Local Government Association and The National Flood Forum. This can be downloaded below.
Whilst we would all prefer not to need to use this information, I nevertheless hope you will find it useful and will keep it to hand should you be affected by flooding in the future.
If you need any assistance, please do not hesitate to contact me by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 0115 930 0521.
Prepare for flooding:
- Sign up to flood alerts here
- Collect free sandbags from Ilkeston and Long Eaton Town Halls
- Move vehicles to higher ground if it is safe to do so
- Move important items upstairs or to a safe place in your property
- Check your insurance covers you for flooding - ABI has a good guide which you can access here
- Look at the best way of stopping floodwater entering your property
- Identify who can help you / who you can help
- Consider what you need to take with you if you had to leave your home
- Only travel if your journey is essential, drive to the conditions and please do not drive through floodwater
- Report any flooding or surface water issues to Derbyshire County Council here and to the Environment Agency via this link
- Alternatively call Floodline on 0345 988 1188
- Call 999 in a life-or-death situation
- If your property is affected by sewage, please contact Severn Trent here
- Make sure your property is safe before entering
- Turn off electricity, water, and gas supplies if it is safe to do so
- Contact your insurance company - ABI has a good guide which you can access here
- Take photos of any damage and flood water line