Stockton Council and the Environment Agency are bidding for £1.2 million from Government to pay for flood defences at Lustrum Beck in Stockton.
Properties in the Lustrum Beck area were among those worst affected during last Autumn's floods.
£415,000 for Stockton has already been secured from the North-East local levy to pay for a smaller scheme to reduce the risk of flooding at Brown’s Bridge. The Environment Agency and Stockton Council have now submitted a bid for £1.2 million which would enable further flood defence and alleviation work to be undertaken for Lustrum Beck.
The causes of flooding in the area are complex and involve both surface water flooding as well as river flooding. The Environment Agency, Stockton Council and Northumbrian Water Ltd are working together to secure funding and develop solutions to reduce the risk of flooding in this area. They have spent several months developing a bid for significant funding to improve flood defences there.
Stockton Council's Cabinet Member for the Environment, Councillor David Rose, said: "This is a significant step forward in the Council, Environment Agency and Northumbrian Water’s efforts to tackle the issue of Lustrum Beck flooding, which can have devastating effects this has on people’s properties and their lives, as we saw in September 2012.
“The Council is committed to working with the Environment Agency and Northumbrian Water to do everything possible to secure funding to improve flood defences there. Residents have told me there has been little progress for more than a decade so I am pleased we secured the £415,000 funding, and that the Northumbria Regional Flood and Coast Committee has endorsed this further bid, therefore, acknowledging the significant need for extra funding to build appropriate flood defences. I hope central Government can also see the undisputable need and release the £1.2 million required for the scheme.
"In addition to our attempts to secure Government funding we are working with our partners to upgrade the equipment we have available to help us reduce the impact of flooding on homes and businesses in the area.”
The bid will be subject to a national prioritisation process. The Government is expected to consider the bid over the coming months and will announce whether it has been successful early next year. If the project is successful in attracting Government funding, the Environment Agency will develop and present a business case for the scheme.
Phil Welton from the Environment Agency, said: “We are hoping to attract further funding to benefit more people and properties and to deliver a higher standard of protection to the whole area.
“While we are waiting for the outcome of the Government funding bid we are working hard to determine the best solutions for the catchment and the most effective way to spend any funding we receive. As part of this we are improving the flood model we use to understand flood risk in the catchment. This model will then be used to understand the impact of a range of potential flood solutions.”
Later in the year the Environment Agency will have more information about the options available and will present them to the residents living in the Lustrum Beck area for development.
Meanwhile Stockton Council has allocated £100,000 which is being spent on emergency defence measures like emergency pumps and flood barriers.
The Stockton Council and Environment Agency websites have a range of flooding advice and information.