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Committee launches £22m flood protection plan for the North East

Floods in Hartlepool Credit: ITV News Tyne Tees

Almost £22million is set to be used to protect homes from flooding in the North East.

Northumbria Regional Flood and Coastal Committee has launched it's business plan for 2017/18 which sees a flood and coastal group overseeing the spending of millions of pounds in order to protect hundreds of homes across the region.

The business plan will include continued work at:

  • Greatham in Hartlepool
  • Killingworth in North Tyneside
  • Hartlepool Headland Coastal Protection Scheme
  • Improvements to the Central Promenade at Whitley Bay
  • Monkton Village Flood Alleviation Study in South Tyneside.
Flooding in Whitley Bay, North Tyneside Credit: ITV News Tyne Tees

It aims to better protect around 743 properties from flood risk and another 100 from coastal erosion.

It also announced in its 2016/17 annual report that it’s overseen 110 projects costing £24.5million over the past year, reducing the risk of flooding and coastal erosion to 1,291 properties.

Projects include Lustrum Beck flood alleviation scheme in partnership with Stockton Borough Council which better protects over 150 properties, and the Brunton Park scheme in partnership with Northumbrian Water and Newcastle City Council, which addressed sewer flooding issues and reduces the risk of flooding from the Ouseburn.

And a dam on the Cotting Burn, the final part of the £28million Morpeth flood alleviation scheme which protects 1,000 homes and business in the town, was completed. The dam has been renamed ‘The Hargreaves Dam’ in memory of Jon Hargreaves, NRFCC Chairman who sadly passed away last October.

The effects of Storm Desmond Credit: ITV News Tyne Tees

The past year has also seen the completion of a £3million repair programme following the devastating floods during Storm Desmond in December 2015.

The annual report and business plan together summarise the past year and look forward to the year ahead.

It is the third year of a six-year programme of work which was agreed in January 2015. The business plan will be updated each year to take into account any adjustments to the £108million, six-year programme, which will better protect a total of 5,300 properties once complete.

Leila Huntington, Flood and Coastal Risk Manager with the Environment Agency in the North East, said:

"On completion of our £22million programme of work for the coming year, we will see a reduction in flood and coastal risk to around 843 homes and businesses in the region, as well as creating 30 hectares of new water dependent wildlife habitat.The committee is a great example of true partnership working, with all local councils, the Environment Agency and Northumbrian Water pulling together on behalf of communities in the north east.

It has an essential role to play in developing and completing flood risk management projects which reflect local priorities and understand the needs of communities.

This is the third year of our six-year programme – so far we have already better protected 2,045 properties, bringing significant benefits to communities, properties, businesses and the environment, and this work will continue."

– Leila Huntington