Sheffield flood defence funding plea

The Wicker during the infamous Sheffield flood of 2007
The Wicker during the infamous Sheffield flood of 2007
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Sheffield is asking the Government for more cash towards a major flood defence project to protect the city.

City leaders and businesses in the Lower Don Valley have bumped up a grant application to the Environment Agency by £10 million.

The original design for 40 ‘interventions’ – designed to control or contain water flow – along an 8km stretch of the River Don originally look set to cost £8.1m. The plan was drawn up after the area was devastated by flooding in 2000 and again in 2007.

However, Sheffield Council is now asking for a total of £18m from the Environment Agency’s flood defence funding towards providing longer-term protection against the effects of climate change.

Coun Jack Scott, cabinet member for environment, said: “Last June, the council approved a ‘one-in-a-100-year event standard scheme’, which we estimated would cost £8.1m.

“However, discussions with the Environment Agency also highlighted that more funding may be available for construction works to mitigate the effects of climate change and ensure the results stand the test of time.

“If we successfully secure additional funding, it will allow the level of flood defences to be raised and extended further to provide a greater level of protection to businesses based on current flooding projections.”

The money will complement the £1.4m investment businesses agreed to contribute to the scheme after a Business Improvement District ballot last month.

Richard Wright, Sheffield Chamber of Commerce executive director, said: “The grant has always been a vital element of delivering this project.”

A decision is expected in March.