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Residents hit by severe flooding need more than ‘business as usual’ approach to alleviate risk of further damage

RESIDENTS hit by severe flooding in Lower Priory and Haven’s Head will see more than ‘business as usual’ put into work to alleviate the risk of further damage.

Two years ago many residents were forced form their homes by flooding following heavy rainfall, with flood water taking five days to recede, and report was commissioned to examine the event.

The results of the investigation were discussed by Pembrokeshire County Council’s services overview and scrutiny committee in July which called for it to be sent to cabinet with a recommendation that further options be examined.

The report’s conclusion that a ‘business as usual’ approach was the only viable option, taking into consideration costs and other factors, was not acceptable and would not alleviate residents’ fears of future flooding.

At cabinet on Monday, September 14 Cllr Phil Baker, member for infrastructure, recommended that the Capita report be noted but the council will “explore every possible avenue of funding” for an additional review examining enhanced option costing, the viability of addressing the flooding of properties, property level protection, potential impact of climate change and the potential for partnership working.

This was welcomed by Milford Haven councillors, including Cllrs Viv and Mike Stoddart, who spoke at Monday’s meeting, having raised the issues faced by residents on several occasions.

Cllr Viv Stoddart said the Capita report “supports what the residents have said for many, many years, that the culverts are not fit for purpose” and were a “contributing factor” in the flooding.

Cllr Stoddart added ‘business as usual’ would leave residents “fearful every time there was heavy rainfall and this is not acceptable.”

She, and Cllr Mike Stoddart, reiterated the view that as landowners, the Port of Milford Haven were responsible for the culverts and what happens to them.

Flood prevention measures in the area could be in the multi-million pound bracket but must be explored further, cabinet agreed.

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