It’s been almost a year since the awful floods on the Somerset Levels, when residents of the area had to evacuate their homes leaving possessions and businesses to the rising water. Some homes still aren’t back to normal, with work to repair properties (and lives) ranging from a spot of replastering to entire demolition and rebuilding.
This evening (8th January) a programme on the BBC is showing the battle families, farmers and indeed the Environment Agency have had to endure over the past 12 months to restore life back to some manner of normalcy. http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b04xnjq9
As a ‘Somter’, watching my home county, and indeed a part of the County very close to my family home, go through those terrible events last winter was difficult, and frustrating. Frustrating mostly because it took almost a week after the floods first hit before Westminster pulled their fingers (and their posh new Hunter wellington boots) out to visit the region, and make some sort of promise that they’d not see the residents left destitute and homeless. Of course, they all forgot about Somerset when the Home Counties started getting flooded as well, and they hauled their posh wellies back to the South East. 6 months (or more) later, and many residents still haven’t been able to return home.
On the plus side, it did spawn a fabulous series of photos, Politicians In Wellies Staring at Floods. Which was hilarious. But then photos of Ed Miliband are always hilarious.
Thankfully dredging has resumed, which should hopefully reduce the chances of this happening again, certainly not on such a scale again. Local campaign groups such as the Flooding on the Levels Action Group (FLAG) are continuing to push the cause of the Levels for improved maintenance of pumps and rivers in the area. Thankfully, so far this winter, we haven’t seen the same weather conditions that we saw last year across the country.