John Redwood welcomes flood grant for Sylvester Close

John Redwood has welcomed the announcement that the Environment Agency is to make money from a property-level flood protection grant available to Wokingham.

Over 150 applications to the “Pathfinder” grant scheme asking for more than £18 million were submitted to DEFRA as part of the Government’s response to the floods caused by the heavy rainfalls of July 2007. Sylvester Close in Wokingham has been selected for the first round of grant awards. The money will provide increased flood protection to 20 properties with a grant of £114,000.

John Redwood has also welcomed work by Wokingham Borough Council to the inlet and outlet to the culvert under the A329M, as well as maintenance by the Environment Agency on the Emmbrook from Sylvester Close to Blue Bell Meadows, which should help alleviate some of the flooding issues in the area.

Speaking about the grant award, John Redwood said: “This is good news for residents but we have waited far too long for it”.

“A great deal of my postbag since July 2007 has been taken up with flooding issues. I have been in regular correspondence with the Environment Agency, the water companies and Wokingham Council with a view to getting all these outstanding issues resolved speedily. I have held meetings with Ministers and made formal submissions to various reviews and Government proposals”.

“It has been frustrating that progress has been so slow, but this is definitely a step in the right direction. However, there is still long way to go before I will be satisfied that everything has been done to protect the whole of Wokingham from the kind of flooding that we saw a few years ago”.


  1. oldrightie
    July 6, 2009

    “This is good news for residents but we have waited far too long for it”.

    Yup, Jimmy Brown’s flood expertise in action? Sometime- never, if left to him.

  2. Mark Wadsworth
    July 6, 2009

    Flood protection is important, but it is a prime example of ‘public’ expenditure that should be met by a land value tax on the properties that benefit therefrom. Sure, owners of those properties should be allowed to vote on whether the spend goes ahead, or whether they just accept higher insurance bills and lower property values as a lesser evil.

  3. Frugal Dougal
    July 6, 2009

    Agreed, but since many places are flooding now that didn’t used to, surely there should also be a premium for building on flood plains, or – as is the case here in the Fens – for building on fields on higher land than existing settlements, which used to absorb rainwater before it reached them?

  4. Nick
    July 6, 2009

    Why not just force the 20 properties to pay for the flood defences. 5K each, and no doubt they would get the work done for a lower cost that the simple shopper.

    As a bonus, I don’t have to pay for the people (idiots) who bought on a flood plane.

    It’s socialist claptrap that everyone else has to pay for other’s mistakes.


    1. Local 'Idiot'
      July 10, 2009

      Before you start calling people idiots I am one of the property owners and when we bought the house 5 years ago the house was not on the flood plain. The house was built in the early 80’s and had never been flooded before.

      If you studied the area you may establish that the culvert which goes under the A329M motorway is half full with silt. The culvert has obviously never been cleared out by the Council since the motorway was built.

      Why should the poor flooded residents have to fork out £5K each after having to move out of our houses for between 9 & 12 months and go thru all that hassle, plus have a blighted property because of the inability of the WBC to keep the culvert maintained????

      Perhaps you have a spare £5K to donate to help the Council get there act together

  5. Resident
    August 7, 2009

    Nick – Why should we pay for the flood defences you stupid man?!
    WBC deemed the area as a non flood area in the 80’s and assured us the houses would never flood. Do you think any of us would intentially purchase a property in an area which was prone to flooding? 144k is the least the council should be giving to us.

    Nobody pumps up when the council spend 250k on dog waste bins or 50k on removing graffiti!

    I hope you never have to live in a caravan with your family for 9 months whilst trying to sustain a degree of normality.

    I suggest you keep your comments to yourself.

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