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Sea surge damage in north Norfolk tops £1m says council chief as he opens talks with government to get financial help

PUBLISHED: 17:13 12 December 2013 | UPDATED: 17:13 12 December 2013

North Norfolk District Council leader Tom FitzPatrick is urging people to support local businesses to help the area recover from the sea surge damage. PHOTO: ANTONY KELLY

North Norfolk District Council leader Tom FitzPatrick is urging people to support local businesses to help the area recover from the sea surge damage. PHOTO: ANTONY KELLY

Archant Norfolk 2013

Sea surge damage along the north Norfolk coast has topped £1m a council chief has confirmed.

District council leader Tom FitzPatrick said assessment was still ongoing but there was major damage to sea walls at Sheringham, Mundesley, Walcott and Bacton.

Today he met government officials to seek getting some help with the costs from central coffers.

Mr Fitzpatrick said Cromer seafront was already in line for a multi-million pound revamp of its aging seawalls, but there was damage elsewhere that needed mending.

The government’s Bellwin scheme could cover up to 85pc of immediate repairs, but NNDC was looking at “longer-term substantial repairs and some upgrading.”

He added: “We have asked for as much as can be given - and I don’t really care where it comes from.”

Damage to beach huts and chalets would be covered by insurance, though there was a high excess - but the priority was to get defences repaired.

The meeting with communities and local government officials - set up by Great Yarmouth MP Brandon Lewis who is the minister - was “positive,” said Mr FitzPatrick.

“They did no say no,” he added.

In the meantime, the council would continue to spend where necessary - such as putting up some people in temporary accommodation - even though it did not have huge reserves to draw upon, and would “worry about who pays afterwards.”

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