March 2 2015 Latest news:
Friday, August 1, 2014
Work to protect homes and businesses along the coast from future floods and storms has begun across the county thanks to a government grant.
Roland and Louise Goodison were at their home in The Quay in Blakeney when the storm hit on December 5.
While the water did not result in extensive damage to their home, it flooded over their 5ft gate and came round the back of their house – seeping through the floor.
It wreaked havoc on the new annexe lived in by Mrs Goodison’s mother, which has had to be rebuilt.
Mr Goodison, a retired accountant, immediately began to build sturdier defences, installing a two-metre gate at the front of the house. He also installed a front-drive barrier, self-closing air bricks and one-way valves in the drains.
And when he submitted an application for the grant, Mr Goodison, 65, and his wife, 60, where awarded the full £5,000.
“It is excellent,” he said. “I was very pleased when I heard the government was going to give me some money.”
Mr Goodison’s mother-in-law Rosamund Wootten, a Blakeney parish councillor, was awarded £2,500 to cover the costs of removable door guards and one-way drain valves.
When the water came flooding over the sea defences in villages such as Walcott and the sea wall in Blakeney did not withstand the powerful waves, many people were forced to leave their homes.
While work to repair properties has been ongoing, extra precautions to prevent water from reaching homes will paid for in a government scheme.
Those with properties damaged in December’s sea surge were eligible to apply for a grant of up to £5,000 from the government.
In north Norfolk, 64 homeowners have been approved for a grant, totalling more than £250,000, with 21 applications still to be considered.
North Norfolk District Council has been administering the applications on the government’s behalf.
Angie Fitch-Tillett, portfolio holder for the coast and environmental services at the council, said it had been an inspired decision by central government to help people in the future.
She said: “In the worst possible way it has focused people’s minds on making sure their properties are protected. We are only to pleased to have administered it on their behalf.”
The grant is to help protect homes from water damage by allowing people to build stronger gates, barriers and equipment such as self-closing air bricks and non-returnable valves.
Applications for the grants were being accepted until yesterday, after the deadline was extended from May 31.
Have you got a coastal story to share? Write to firstname.lastname@example.org