Live updates

West Country (E)

Government increases farmers' flood fund share

The Environment Secretary has revealed that just a small proportion of the fund set up to help farmers recover from the floods has actually been spent.

So far just 40 farmers have been successful in claiming any money from the £10m fund - with many complaining it is too difficult or too complicated to apply.

Until now farmers in affected areas have been able to apply for up to £5,000. Today Owen Paterson was in Somerset to announce that was rising to £35,000.

Robert Murphy reports:

If you're a farmer and need some help applying for the flood recovery fund, you can ring Somerset County Council on 01823 355427 and speak to Abigail Vickery and Anne Langdon.

West Country (E)

Environment Secretary accepts farmers' criticism

The Environment secretary, Owen Paterson, has accepted criticism from farmers who have complained it is too difficult to apply for flood recovery money.

The minister was in Somerset this morning to announce the next phase of funding.

Until now, flooded farmers could only apply for up to £5,000. Now they can apply for £35,000 worth of relief.

But some farmers say the forms are too complicated and difficult to complete.

If you're a farmer and need some help applying for the flood recovery fund, you can ring Somerset County Council on 01823 355427 and speak to Abigail Vickery and Anne Langdon.

Advertisement

West Country (E)

How £20 million flood plan money will be spent

Details have been revealed of how £20 million pounds will be spent on the Somerset Levels to prevent flooding. It includes raising a road near Muchelney - which was completely cut off by the flood water.

And that's just one of many schemes Somerset County Council says could be finished by the end of the year. Our Somerset correspondent David Woodland reports.

Somerset Council to spend £38 million on building projects

Somerset County Council has this afternoon announced it will be spending over £38 million on major building projects from school classrooms to fixing roads.

The plans released in papers to be discussed by a Scrutiny Committee today include £23 million to be spent on roads and bridges and £3.5 million will help provide school places across the county.

These are very ambitious projects, and in some cases urgent ones.

Not a penny of this £38 million investment will be money borrowed by the Council. All the investment will come from either our own funds, or grants from the Government and other bodies.

We will be spending more than a million pounds replacing rundown temporary classrooms, and it is vital that we give our children the best possible opportunity to learn, that means the best buildings we can provide.

– Council Leader John Osman

The £38.72 million is allocated for projects starting in the next financial year and does not include £21 million earmarked for the new Northern Inner Distributor Road for Taunton.

Advertisement

Today's top stories