New map reveals flood risks to Norfolk

This map shows where properties in Norfolk would be at risk in the type of flood which happens once every 30 years. This map shows where properties in Norfolk would be at risk in the type of flood which happens once every 30 years.

Wednesday, April 30, 2014
11:39 AM

The potential flooding risk to thousands of homes in the heart of the Norfolk must not be forgotten because so much attention has been focused on the problems the county’s coast has suffered, councillors have warned.

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And questions have been asked over whether more needs to be done to dredge the county’s rivers, with some councillors saying work to stop water ending up in rivers is being undermined by the Environment Agency’s failure to dredge them.

Norfolk is the 10th most at-risk area for flooding in the UK, according to the Environment Agency. And a new map has revealed the number of properties in the county deemed to be at risk of flooding in the type of flood which happens once every 30 years.

That map shows Norwich, Fakenham, Coltishall, Aylsham, Wroxham and Hoveton are among locations where the most properties would be affected by such a flood. The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, has made £24m available to risk management authorities –which includes the county council, district councils and the Environment Agency –this year, to put in measures to prevent that flooding. Another £16m is likely to be available next year.

Projects the £24m is being spent on includes a 
contribution towards the long-term Great Yarmouth tidal defence scheme 
and ongoing beach management at Hunstanton and Heacham.

But councillors yesterday said flooding by inland rivers must not be forgottent.

Bill Borrett, leader of the Conservative group at Norfolk County Council, said: “I am a member of the Norfolk Rivers Internal Drainage Board and we have immense frustration with the Environment Agency for the work they are not doing on the river Wensum. All of the work the internal drainage board is doing to protect properties is being undermined by the fact the Environment Agency does not believe in dredging.

“The river Wensum, upstream of Norwich, is the area with the most properties which are at risk of flooding in Norfolk. It’s not on the coast - it’s right in the heart of Norfolk.”

No-one from the Environment Agency was available for comment.

Surface water drainage plans - which highlight flood risk and potential ways to mitigate them – have been produced for Greater Norwich and Great Yarmouth. Plans for King’s Lynn, North Norfolk and South Norfolk are being worked on.

Do you think enough is being done to protect Norfolk from flooding? Write, giving full contact details, to Letters Editor, Prospect House, Rouen Road, Norwich NR1 1RE.

10 comments

  • The committee on climate change said £500 million was needed nationally to catch up.The government has the choice of spending this extra money now or wait until it's too late when the costs of flooding will amount to much more.In 10,20,50 years time this investment will look like money well spent.

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    Peter Watson

    Friday, May 2, 2014

  • Dredging is only done on navigationable rivers or parts of, but the issue of flooding has been largely ignored. I welcome the interest of the drainage boards to take back some responsibilities they'd loast to the EA in the past, they rae far better funded and have the local knowledge in most cases. Building on flood plains is still occuring and despite the demand from the insurance industry to build habitable dwellings at a certain height, their overall responsibilites to keep contributions and risks low is lacking as they are not taking a greater intererst in flood protection and sea defences as they could do.

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    ingo wagenknecht

    Friday, May 2, 2014

  • What a shame Borrett didn’t give a hoot about the flood plain of the River Ouse where he wanted to site the incinerator, silt reducing its capacity by about 50%, which would have created devastation with the IBA stockpiles. Lack of maintenance by the EA allowed the Big Eye at Denver Sluice to silt up, it has been inoperable for years so it cannot drain inland. An FOI em from the EA to RPS, who were acting on behalf of CW said there was no need to mention the dioxin in the silt. It’s nothing to do with the EA not believing in dredging Borrett, there is no value placed on people’s lives where money is concerned, rather like you and your pro-incinerator chums.

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    Honest John

    Wednesday, April 30, 2014

  • Well I spent my early years near the Wensum and still have close connections in some of the villages but grew up on the Fen edge and spend a lot of time in the Fens now.I have never considered the Wensum a problem when it comes to flooding but very much agree with the comment about the Ouse and the EA .The Wensum is an almost natural river in places and is being " re wilded" I believe but still, as far as I know has quite an area of water meadows to spill onto without affecting properties. Yes we know Norwich is vulnerable to thunderstorm flooding but not the devastating flooding of the kind that the Fens got in 1947 and 1938. I spoke with an IDB member earlier this year, who despairs of the EA and said if we had received as much rain as the West Country the Fens would have been in dire straits. As it was the Washes and flood plains along the Ouse and Nene were all flooded for a very long time -but still the EA refuses to concede that artificial drainage systems need artificial dredging and weed cutting.

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    Daisy Roots

    Wednesday, April 30, 2014

  • Great Yarmouth more a sand pit than a sand bank! Well said Bill. Concentrate in land not just on the coast. Flooding in a heavily built up area will be far more destructive to people and property than a less densely populated area on the coast.

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    Andy T

    Wednesday, April 30, 2014

  • I wonder how many houses have been flooded during the last 50 years in those areas shown on the map? The problem with the EA is that it has been taken over by academic environmentalists who do not care for people. The Somerset Levels issues have demonstrated this quite clearly and we will all suffer the same fate if they continue to deliberately neglect the waterways in Norfolk. The same individuals are responsible for our coastline so we know what to expect from them. Whilst cutting back on protecting us all, they have however found time to recruit hundreds of new staff over the last year or two. I wonder what they all pretend to do?

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    andy

    Wednesday, April 30, 2014

  • Archant doesn't like web links. To find out if your area is at risk, do a web search for "environment agency" and "find out if you're at risk"

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    So_Many_Haters!

    Wednesday, April 30, 2014

  • This map is no different from the sort of map the Environment Agency has already produced. All you have to do is put in your postcode or zoom in on the map to see your local risk. Try www.gov.uk (forward slash) prepare-for-a-flood (forward slash) find-out-if-youre-at-risk

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    So_Many_Haters!

    Wednesday, April 30, 2014

  • I would say that Yarmouth should be in the dark blue colour, at most risk of flooding and properties most at risk seeing as Yarmouth is just one big sandbank. The sea giveth and the sea taketh away

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    "V"

    Wednesday, April 30, 2014

  • Nowhere near enough has been done to protect Norfolk from flooding in the past few years. Our rivers have been allowed to silt up very badly. Lack of proper maintenance has resulted in most bends on the River Great Ouse now having massive sandbanks. Any enterprising person could rent out deckchairs on some of them! If this same failure to dredge and maintain other rivers in Norfolk is normal practice, then we should all be worried. Typically, Mr. Bor.ret.t would be concerned about the River Wensum flooding. I believe it's at the bottom of his garden!

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    disolushund

    Wednesday, April 30, 2014

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

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