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Wednesday, 01 July 2015

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Cockermouth flood defences work to go ahead

Cockermouth has taken a step towards getting £4.4 million flood defences after Allerdale council approved the scheme.

The Environment Agency is now finalising funding, and it is hoped building work will start in June.

But councillors warned that rivers must be regularly dredged to help prevent future flooding.

The council’s development panel gave unanimous backing to the Environment Agency’s plans to protect the town against a one-in-100-year flood event.

The measures include a self-rising flood barrier at Rubbybanks Road, new embankments, flood gates and higher flood walls along the River Derwent and River Cocker, and flood-resistant windows in listed houses at The Croft.

The scheme will increase flood protection for about 360 homes and 55 businesses.

Councillor Martin Wood said that if the rivers were not dredged regularly, the riverbed could end up being raised by as much as the defence works.

Sara Brook, planning officer, said the Environment Agency had indicated a commitment to gravel management, but it was out of the council’s control.

Coun Chris Garrard asked the panel to approve the plans, seconded by Coun Sam Standage.

The Government has pledged £3.3million towards the defences, with councils, businesses and other groups meeting the rest.

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