Flood strategy highlights thousands at risk

PUBLISHED: 16:00 20 June 2014

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THOUSANDS of homes across North Somerset could be at risk of flooding in the event of severe storms.

A total of 15 towns and villages in the region have been described as ‘priority communities’ in a new flood strategy by North Somerset Council.

Areas including Congresbury, Hutton, Winscombe, Weston, Wrington, Churchill and Langford have been highlighted as high-risk.

The second wettest winter on record was recorded in 2012, which left almost 350 properties across North Somerset flooded.

Last year more storms left other parts of Somerset underwater, with many people forced out of their homes over Christmas and into the beginning of this year.

At the council’s executive meeting on Tuesday, deputy leader Elfan Ap Rees questioned whether the report did enough to pinpoint risks, highlighting that Locking was not included in the report, despite suffering from severe flooding.

He said: “Residents in the village who have been flooded will wonder why it isn’t in the report.

“The bottom line is that over the years we have ended up with a drainage system that is inadequate and we have flood water entering into it.”

The council’s director for development and environment David Turner said they were making the best out of a ‘difficult situation’.

The current report notes that flooding ‘remains a big issue in North Somerset’.

It highlights the need for new strategies to be implemented to protect thousands of properties from sewer, surface, groundwater, river and tidal flooding.

A total of 2,000 residential and non-residential properties in North Somerset are estimated to be at risk of flooding during the type of severe rainfall seen once every 30 years.

Almost 1,000 of those properties were from surface water flood risk in just nine of the highlighted areas.

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