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Council leaders call for government action to support flood-damaged residents

29th January 2021 @ 6:06am – by CWaC
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Leaders with Cheshire West and Chester Council have called on the government to support residents affected by flooding in the borough.

In a letter to the Secretary of State for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, George Eustice, the Leader of the Council stresses that action is needed to protect the borough from future flooding.

Areas of Cheshire West including Northwich, Winsford, Farndon, Acton Bridge, Tattenhall, Chester and Ellesmere Port were all hit by heavy rain brought by Storm Christoph last week.

One of the worst-hit areas of the borough was Northwich, where water ran waist-high in some places, flooding homes and businesses.

Across the borough, over 100 residents were evacuated from flooded homes, many of whom were provided with temporary accommodation.

As water levels began to subside and the clean-up began, Council officers started to contact businesses and residents affected to offer them support.

Cheshire West and Chester Council has initiated a review of the flooding incidents across the borough in its role as the legal flooding authority. This review will ensure that lessons are learnt for the future.

Cllr Gittins adds: "We will identify the infrastructure needs, and I urge the government and United Utilities to make the necessary investment to protect our communities."

The letter goes on to urge the government to provide financial support for Cheshire West and other councils affected by the storm and to: "Ensure that communities in Cheshire West receive the financial support they need for recovery, with minimal barriers and bureaucracy, and reflecting the special circumstances created by the pandemic."

Cheshire West and Chester's Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Environment, Highways and Strategic Transport, Cllr Karen Shore, said: "The flooding has massively affected some businesses across our borough and business owners will understandably be very concerned about the future and getting back on their feet, especially following the impact of COVID-19 restrictions.

"The wellbeing of residents affected is our priority and our officers have been going door-to-door in areas of the borough affected to share information and to ensure people are supported....

"The businesses we have spoken to are understandably asking about financial assistance, especially those who are uninsured. We need to build a picture of the scale of the financial impacts from businesses directly, to direct them to the right support. Many businesses are currently closed in line with the national COVID-19 restrictions, and we may not have been in touch with them yet. We ask them to contact us so that we can support them."

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