Flooding Provisions for Hayling Island and Langstone - 16th March 2016

16th March 2016 Thank you for contacting me about flooding and provisions in place for Hayling Island and Langstone. During the recent flooding, the Government activated the Bellwin scheme, which provides financial support to local authorities affected by disasters including floods. Ministers also announced a fund worth over £100 million to help affected families and businesses get the help they need as quickly as possible, more than £50 million to rebuild and improve overwhelmed flood defences and pledged to match the first £2 million raised by local charities. The Government is now reviewing national flood resilience to ensure that the country can deal with increasingly extreme weather events. Over the next six years £2.3 billion will be invested in flood defences, a real terms increase on the £1.7 billion invested in the last Parliament, which was in turn a real terms increase on the £1.5 billion spent between 2005 and 2010. This will fund 1,500 projects protecting 300,000 homes, 420,000 acres of farmland, 205 miles of railway and 340 miles of road. It is on top of the 250,000 homes and 580,000 acres of agricultural land better protected in the last Parliament. Combined with previous investment, by the end of the decade 550,000 homes and businesses will be protected better, preventing a total of £30 billion in economic damages. I have also been assured that flood maintenance spending will be protected in real terms over the course of this Parliament. There are contingency plans in place should Hayling Island bridge be closed for any reason. Hampshire County Councillor for Hayling Island, Frank Pearce, has informed me that a few years ago a major exercise was completed, which envisaged the bridge being completely destroyed by a plane. It involved all the emergency services in Hampshire including boats and police boats. Cllr Pearce has also suggested that if the bridge was unusable, the Army could be called in to supply a Bailey bridge as they did when Chichester flooded. Millions of pounds have been spent on sea defences at various locations on Hayling, especially at Eastoke, whilst Langstone has also benefited, and Cllr Frank Pearce will continue to seek more funding whenever possible. The Environment Agency is aware of the flood risk, it is being monitored and work continues to protect Hayling and the surrounding area in collaboration with the Eastern Solent Coastal Partnership. I also raised this issue personally with the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, Rt Hon. Liz Truss MP, on her recent visit to Hayling. Thank you again for taking the time to contact me. ALAN MAK MP

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Alan Mak MP - Letter to Havant Constituents - Flood defences on Hayling Island - 16 Mar 2016 287.96 KB