After the floods: One month on in the Cotswolds

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After the floods: One month on in the Cotswolds

One month after the floods that hit Gloucestershire on July 20th, Cotswold District Council is still dealing with the aftermath and counting the cost.

A door-to-door survey carried out by Council staff and Members has revealed that at least 1,150 properties were flooded across the District's 450 square miles.

The worst affected areas included Chipping Campden, Weston Sub Edge, Moreton in Marsh, Blockley, Stow on the Wold, Bourton on the Water, Cirencester, Fairford, Lechlade, Downington, Whelford, Kempsford, Barnsley, Andoversford, Adlestrop, Tetbury, Naunton, Northleach, The Slaughters and Willersey.

The survey teams have been providing advice and information on bulky waste collections, bogus callers and how to apply for help from the countywide flood relief fund. They have also identified vulnerable householders who may need assistance from the Council in recovering from the floods.

The Council this week welcomed the news that the District will receive at least £600,000 in Government funding to help communities get back on their feet.

CDC has already spent more than £60,000 on the emergency – including rest centres, recycling for plastic bottles, staffing, portaloos, sand and furniture collections. It aims to claim some of the money back from a separate Government assistance scheme.

Between July 20th and August 2nd, 68 members of staff were directly involved in responding to the emergency, involving 1,320 hours of work.

In response to the flood and its aftermath, the Council has:

* Taken 1,200 calls from members of the public about the floods and clean-up operations.
* Collected free of charge 213 tonnes of flood-damaged furniture and more than 200 fridges and washing machines from 600 households to date.
* Swept 80 tonnes of flood-related dirt and debris from the District's roads
* Collected half a tonne of plastic bottles from three parishes who lost their water supply
* Contacted 84 food businesses in the most badly-affected areas. Twenty-four of these were unable to open normally due to flood damage and five are likely to be closed for business for at least three months.
* Taken 14 water samples, from private and mains water supplies, all of which appear to be satisfactory.
* Re-housed two families –more are understood to be staying with friends and relatives
* Received 200 applications for business rate/council tax relief for people who have been forced to leave their properties unoccupied after the flood.

Council Leader Cllr Lynden Stowe said: "Our staff are doing a great job by continuing to provide practical help and support to people affected by the floods.

"We have been very impressed by how communities have rallied round to help each other and support their neighbours.

"The £600,000 pledged by the Government to help Cotswold communities get back on their feet is most welcome. We are pleased that there seems to be little red tape involved and we have some freedom in choosing how the grant will be used. We will be discussing as soon as possible how best we can spend the money to help our rural towns and villages that suffered widespread damage."

Posted : 20/08/2007 11:30:12

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