St Neots flood group that is 'voice for the community' is constituted
- Credit: Andris Cablis
A group in St Neots that has helped residents rebuild their lives after devastating floods is now fully constituted.
The St Neots Flood Liaison Action Group (FLAG) was set up in December 2020, after flash floods hit the town during the previous summer.
Just weeks later the worst floods in 20 years hit the county – wrecking the homes of hundreds of people for Christmas.
The milestone of the FLAG getting constituted was marked at a meeting last week (December 8) at The Priory Centre.
"This is a community initiative setup on behalf of the wider community, to help try to reduce the impact of future flood events," explained chair, Tim Wylie.
"The group focus is around emergency planning and providing a unified and focused voice for the community, to communicate ideas and queries to external bodies and authorities.”
Mr Wylie continued: “We want to lessen risk of the community flooding and we can only do that by coming together and working together.
"The gullies have been dealt with reasonably quickly but there is not a simple or quick fix for the flood risk from the river and brooks in the town.
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"So, we are encouraging residents to make their homes flood resilient."
Mr Wylie was on the ground with residents last winter during the floods and the clean-up. He had experienced flooding himself prior to moving to St Neots.
"You never forget being flooded" He added.
Since January, numerous meetings have been held with county council officials to deal with the surface water threat.
“The threat of surface water flooding has been reduced, and residents have seen a huge improvement,” Mr Wylie added.
"FLAG is also about educating people to prepare for flooding.
"Homeowners need to understand that it's not up to others to protect their homes, the homeowner needs to protect their own home.
"It's been really encouraging seeing residents start to embrace this. St Neots had 13 wet problem areas in the town that flooded regularly due to surface water issues.
"Working with CCC Highways, the FLAG has seen these areas improve and 12 months later only one historically problematic wet spot remains.
“It’s been 12 months of perseverance.
"The surface water flood risk has been reduced but it has not been removed, so it is important that we do what we can to educate people to protect their homes."
Visit www.stneotsflag.org or search St Neots Flag on Facebook.