Cheshire East Council is urging communities, landowners and partners to come together to help tackle the scale and extent of future flooding incidents across the borough.
The recent spells of intense rainfall on already waterlogged ground, coupled with high river levels, has brought about unprecedented episodes of flooding across the borough.
The council is appealing to farmers and all landowners to clear ditches and culverts and improve land drainage. It is taking measures on its own land to improve drainage, where necessary, while the council’s highways and environmental services teams have stepped up gully cleaning and street sweeping.
Across Cheshire East, it is estimated that more than 35,000 homes and business premises are located in areas where there is a recognised risk of flooding and all property owners have a responsibility to carry out their own measures to protect their homes and property without causing any interference with neighbouring properties.
Emergency planning teams from the council and other agencies are already working with communities affected by recent flooding events. Many residents and communities, including parish and town councils, provide support and help to each other, to build resilience, and share knowledge and strategies for dealing with flood emergencies.
The joint Cheshire emergency planning team works with town and parish councils to develop a community emergency plan to provide advice and direction, build resilience in communities and enable residents and councils to coordinate their own actions and responses.
Frank Jordan, Cheshire East Council’s executive director for place, said: “It is important that we all work together to better prepare for the kind of flooding events we have experienced in the borough.
“We recognise that in some parts of the country, as well as in our borough, residents have experienced severe flooding incidents and have seen damage to their property and been forced to leave their homes or have been seriously inconvenienced by the closure of local roads.
“Naturally, we want to do all we can as a council and flood authority to try to minimise that risk here in Cheshire East but we would urge all home and property owners to check the flood risk map which shows the identified flood risk areas in the borough.
“We are working with a number of our partner agencies and organisations, including the Environment Agency, United Utilities, the Canal and River Trust, farmers and landowners.
“We are asking all landowners to take whatever steps they feel appropriate to help minimise the risk of flooding to properties, to roads and footways. If necessary, the council does have the power under the Land Drainage Act 1991, to compel landowners to do this.”
Cheshire East Council continues to work within national planning policy guidelines regarding new development and flood risk to make sure that the risk of flooding is properly considered and reflected in planning decisions.
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