CASTLE Point is at “increased risk” of major flooding events as a result of climate change, a council report has found.

In response, councillor voted on Wednesday night to form a four-agency flooding forum to protect residents, businesses and infrastructure across the borough.

The area, particularly Canvey, has a long history of flooding from both heavy rain and coastal surges.

Most recently on October 20 of last year, heavy rainfall saw flash flooding in Benfleet and Hadleigh and some parts of Canvey.

More than 50mm of rainfall fell, with 32mm pouring down in an hour-long burst between 9pm and 10pm, which is likely to have overwhelmed the drainage system and resulted in flooding.

“This event was reported to be a 1-in 28-year flood event by the FEH estimation tools and the likelihood of an event of similar magnitude to occur in the future is predicted to increase with climate change,” the report said.

Councillor Dave Blackwell, leader of the council, said: “The forum will see four authorities work together to put in place actions that will help minimise the risk of flooding, invest in infrastructure and provide the best possible response to events and those affected.

“The risk and impacts of flooding have significant implications for our economy and residents.

“This will provide vital protection needed in an area with historical flooding issues.”

Membership of the forum will include Essex County Council, Castle Point Council, the Environment Agency, and Anglian Water.

 In Castle Point in 2014, extreme rainfall over a five-hour period saw more than one million cubic metres of water fall on Canvey, which overwhelmed large parts of the drainage system and causing widespread flooding, including the inundation of 330 homes.

“Monitoring undertaken by the Meteorological Office and the BBC has identified that within south east Essex temperatures have risen over the last thirty years and that we now experience hotter, drier summers and warmer winters,” the report added.

“A warmer climate means the atmosphere can hold more water, so we may have fewer wet days, but those wet days have the potential to be more extreme in terms of the quantity of water deposited.”