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Extra £67k for flood defences to keep south Essex safe
12:00pm Saturday 16th February 2013 in News
SEA defences in south Essex are set to be given a boost as an extra £67,000 will be spent on keeping the county safe from flooding.
The Environment Agency has announced it will be splashing out a whopping £2.5million over the next year to ensure the 430km of flood defences along the Essex coast in Canvey, Southend and Thurrock will be maintained to the highest standard.
This is a 2.7 per cent increase on last year’s budget of £2.48million.
It comes as the county came together earlier this month to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the 1953 North Sea Flood in which over 300 people tragically lost their lives.
County councillor Ray Howard, who sits on the agency’s Anglian Regional Flood and Coastal Committee which agreed the rise, said: “This is fantastic news. It is so important we remain vigilant and keep our flood defences to the highest standard, and this increase in funding will help ensure that happens.”
The organisation is already carrying a £2.4million renovation of three flood barriers at East Haven, Fobbing and Benfleet.
The 32-year old flood gates, which cost around £12million to construct, protect approximately 14,000 homes across south Essex by closing whenever higher-than-average tides are expected to stop the creeks from flooding Canvey and parts of the mainland which are below sea level.
A spokesperson for the Environment Agency said: “We have reviewed our maintenance programme to make sure we are continuing to spend taxpayers’ money where it delivers the greatest flood risk benefit."
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