John Redwood has welcomed the findings of the Pitt Review, published today. He is pleased to note that his urging for clarity of responsibility among the relevant authorities is a central tenet of the reportâ€™s recommendations. The report proposes a framework, overseen by the Environment Agency, in which all responsibilities are clearly mapped out on a local level. Mr Redwood very much hopes that this will, finally, translate into some action on the ground, ensuring the gully clearance and capacity increases that are needed to avoid risking a repeat of last July.
Having submitted concerns to the review regarding the planning process, John Redwood also welcomes the reportâ€™s emphasis on the need either to implement properly, or strengthen, existing planning legislation, in order to reduce the flood risks posed by new building developments.
He is concerned, however, that the lack of urgency in producing the final report will also characterise the implementation of its recommendations.
Speaking today, John Redwood said: â€œIt has taken more than a year for the government to come up with a report, chronicling the obvious failures of the authoritiesâ€™ responses to floods last year. Meanwhile some people are still not back in their homes one year on, and many still face the threat of floods if we have more heavy rainfall. It is vital that the government accept the main thrust of this report, and get on with accepting responsibility to carry out the works needed and to make the planning decisions that are required, to prevent so much flooding of people’s homes in the future.â€