£22m Sheffield flood defence plans

SHEFFIELD FLOODS   Floods on The Wicker.   26 June 2007
SHEFFIELD FLOODS Floods on The Wicker. 26 June 2007
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FLOOD defence plans for the lower Don Valley could receive a funding boost of up to £22 million to help prevent a repeat of the 2007 disaster and protect hundreds of businesses.

Companies were deluged when the Don burst its banks, and Peter Harding, aged 68, from Burngreave, died after getting into difficulty on the Wicker.

About 20 people were airlifted from the roof of one building, while hundreds were stranded at Jessops Riverside industrial complex off Brightside Lane.

The Government could provide £11 million, which would have to be match-funded by Sheffield Council, the European Union, the Environment Agency and businesses.

Work has already started and includes a park on Nursery Street where the river bank has been excavated to allow overspill. A wall has been built along the Don between Blonk Street and the Wicker viaduct. But further work had stalled because it was dependent upon funding from the former Yorkshire Forward development agency, which has been abolished.

Nick Clegg, Hallam MP and Deputy Prime Minister, said: “This £11m investment will improve protection for over 300 businesses and encourage new firms to move in. I know businesses in our industrial heartland of the Lower Don Valley will welcome the news.