Recommendations on Huntingdonshire flooding investigation report are due in May

People in Hemingford Grey were still struggling with flooded homes and gardens weeks after December flood.

People in Hemingford Grey were still struggling with flooded homes and gardens weeks after December flood. - Credit: ARCHANT

An investigation carried out by Huntingdonshire District Council into flooding last December is continuing and some recommendations on what can be done will be announced in the next few weeks.

The authority has held talks with representatives of the businesses and communities affected by the floods over the Christmas period following a spell of heavy rain, which led to the River Great Ouse bursting its banks, and is holding discussions with agencies including Cambridgeshire County Council, the Environment Agency and Anglian Water.

The district’s Task & Finish Group will report its findings through the Council’s Overview & Scrutiny Panel with recommendations expected to be made in May.
Firefighters received almost 350 calls for help in tackling the floods which came as part of Storm Bella which hit the district on December 23, with Alconbury and Ramsey being the worst hit initially. 

Councillor Darren Tysoe, chairman of the Overview and Scrutiny, who is leading the review, said: “The flooding had a tremendous impact on Huntingdonshire’s residents and businesses. 
“While the scale of those events was unusual and not seen since 1998, the likelihood of future similar events is very real, and everyone must be well informed and best prepared to reduce the impacts.”

Cllr Tysoe said: “I will ensure this review aims to identify how water management can be proactively controlled and, most importantly, how communities can be supported to be ready and able to respond.
“I am very grateful for the community responses that we have received, and these will be extremely helpful moving forward as we tackle future impacts with our key partners engaging in this review.”

This photograph taken in Holywell shows the high water levels.

This photograph taken in Holywell shows the high water levels. - Credit: ARCHANT

A review session has already been held with Cambridgeshire County Council over its duties on surface water, highways, and emergency response. 
The district council said: “As well as exploring the measures being put in place regarding roads maintenance, active monitoring, management of drainage and watercourses, we also looked at opportunities for enhancing advice and support towards establishing more localised flood groups at a community level.

“The next stage of the review is to work with the Environment Agency, exploring its responsibilities and activities around river water controls, catchment management, the robustness of flood predictions and how flood warnings and preparedness advice reaches communities. Anglian Water will also be engaged regarding utilities and foul water arrangements.”

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