Council gets £14.6m flood repair funding

Northumberland County Council has welcomed the government's announcement of more than £14m to tackle the damage caused by winter storms.

Thursday, 17th March 2016, 3:01 pm
Updated Tuesday, 22nd March 2016, 10:40 am

The council had confirmation from Robert Goodwill MP today that it is to receive £14.6m from the Department for Transport towards repair costs – after submitting a bid for £24.3m.

Northumberland suffered substantial damage to homes, businesses and infrastructure during flooding and severe weather in December and January – leaving it with a repair bill of more than £24 million.

Council leader Grant Davey said: “I would like to thank the government for its allocation which will allow us to start work on a number of vital schemes in the county.

“These will include repairs to Ovingham Bridge, landslips at Bywell and Widehaugh and works in Corbridge.”

Earlier this year floods minister James Wharton visited flood affected areas and was pressed for funding commitment, while the council also called on the county’s MPs to help press its case.

Cllr Davey added: “While it is disappointing we were unsuccessful in obtaining our total bid this is a significant contribution. I’d like to take this opportunity to thank Northumberland’s four MPs for their support in pushing for this funding.”

The minister also notified the council it is to receive around £1.2 million towards pothole repairs over the next financial year.

This work will start immediately as the council continues to tackle the damage caused to roads by the severe weather.

Councillor Ian Swithenbank, Cabinet Member for Local Services added: “The extreme weather over December and January has taken its toll on the road network and the freezing conditions which followed the wet weather caused further issues.

“We fully appreciate the importance of maintaining our roads to a high standard and we know this is an issue which drivers and residents are concerned about.

“This extra funding will allow us to implement an intensive programme of pothole repairs, starting as early as next week and lasting for a four month period, to help address the damage that has occurred to road surfaces this winter.”

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