Our flood defences must be up to the job
Last updated at 19:54, Thursday, 28 June 2012
This washout of a summer has left most of us feeling pretty miserable.
But surely nobody was quite expecting the torrent that put the area on high flood alert last weekend, and which continues to cause anxiety as forecasters warn of more rain.
Rushing floodwater caused £100,000 of damage at Threlkeld Cricket Club where hundreds of tonnes of rubble was deposited.
Maryport’s first ever harbour festival was called off as gale force winds ripped at marquees.
But the one ray of hope during gloomy June was in Cockermouth, where the town’s Gote Road flood defences withstood their first serious test since being built after the 2009 disaster.
Residents watched anxiously as the River Derwent broke its banks.
But recently installed flood gates and a new pumping system did their jobs.
It’s a testament to the persistence of local people such as Sue Cashmore, of Cockermouth Flood Action Group, who said that without the Gote Road defences homes would probably have been flooded.
There’s no room for complacency, however. We are being given an unseasonal battering, so what might we face come winter?
The Environment Agency has started further flood defence works in the town, and speed is of the essence.
The work being done must protect West Cumbria from ever suffering a repeat of what happened in 2009.
First published at 19:24, Thursday, 28 June 2012
Published by http://www.timesandstar.co.uk
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Lets not forget that the current work in Cockermouth will not stop a flood of 2009.