Overcast

Overcast

max temp: 15°C

min temp: 14°C

Search

Ipswich: Tidal barrier could attract funds from £60m government cash-pot

PUBLISHED: 19:22 30 November 2012

Archant

THE Ipswich tidal barrier has been highlighted by the Treasury as a project which could attract funding from a new £60m government cash-pot.

Chief Secretary to the Treasury Danny Alexander yesterday announced a total of £120m which he said would strengthen flood defences around the country, in order to protect homes and businesses in areas of high risk.

The first £60m will be handed to the Environment Agency to distribute. Meanwhile the second £60m will be targeted at flood defence projects which would particularly help boost economic growth.

Officials from the Treasury told the East Anglian Daily Times that the Ipswich tidal barrier was the sort of scheme they would expect could benefit from some funding in the second pot, as it would deliver “growth potential” as well as mitigating flood risk.

The scheme, costing £54m in total, would see a tidal barrier built to protect 1,600 homes and 240 commercial properties in the town centre against significant flood risk, as well as allowing derelict waterside land to be redeveloped.

The announcement comes amid clean-up operations across the UK in the aftermath of the recent flooding which devastated communities in the South West, Midlands, Wales and North East.

Mr Alexander said: “The damage to so many households and businesses this week from the severe flooding seen across the country has been devastating.

“This £120m boost to flood defences will accelerate improved flood protection for up to 60,000 homes and deliver much needed help to flood-threatened businesses across the country”

The exact mechanism through which Ipswich Council can apply for the funding will be set out in further detail in the autumn statement which is due to be made by the chancellor on Wednesday.

But Labour’s shadow environment secretary Mary Creagh said: “This year’s floods have shown how short-sighted the government was to cut investment in flood defences by £95m a year, leaving homes and businesses unprotected.

“Flooding is the biggest threat the UK faces from climate change, yet even after today’s mini U turn the government will still be spending less on flood defences next year than in 2008.”

Ipswich MP Ben Gummer has been leading the fight for the flood defences, and was delighted at the news.

He said: “This is really fantastic. It will protect the town from the dangers of climate change and the risks of flooding for many many years.”

Mr Gummer said the news was especially satisfying, because it meant he had achieved what he had aimed at during his first term as MP.

He said: “When I was elected I pledged to fight for five major projects for the town: new schools for Holywells and Chantry, the new rail chord, the Travel Ipswich project, and the flood defences. This is the fifth of those.”

Comments have been disabled on this article.

The law firm representing former pupils of the disgraced Oakwood School in Stowmarket say their clients have received more than £2million in compensation from Suffolk County Council.

The founder of a charity that supports sexually abused children in Suffolk has given an insight into what it’s like working in this harrowing field as the organisation marks its fifth birthday.

Family and friends have raised a glass for Muriel ‘Midge’ Barker – who celebrates her 106th birthday on Friday

Parents have been urged to read more often to their children after research found almost half feel they do not set a good example at home across East Anglia.

A woman and three teenagers have appeared in court charged with Class A drugs offences in Ipswich.

A new housing plan set up to oversee the building of just under 10,000 new homes in Ipswich by 2031 sparked a heated debate at a full council meeting tonight as several councillors had their say.

Concerned members of the public phoned police today reporting that a fight had broken out between a large group of children.

Bosses of a Felixstowe care home have lauded their staff for snapping quickly into action and heeding advice from the health watchdog after it was told it must make urgent improvements.

A proud daughter is preparing to run the inaugural Great East Run in Suffolk this weekend to raise money for a cause close to her heart.

A Suffolk father whose flight was cancelled by Ryanair at just a week’s notice because the company messed up its pilots’ rota has had to fork out hundreds of pounds so he can still take his son to see their favourite football team play.

Most read

Show Job Lists

Topic pages

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter
MyDate24 MyPhotos24