e-mail from National Flood Forum

----- Original Message -----
From: "Amanda Davies" <amanda.davies@floodforum.org.uk>
To: <amanda.davies@floodforum.org.uk>
Sent: Wednesday, August 01, 2007 4:08 PM
Subject: Fw: Summer Floods 2007

> Dear All,
> I thought I'd drop you an email to firstly send our commiserations if
> you have been flooded recently (as indeed I have!). I'm sure you must
> all be aware that the NFF have been very active in the media (TV radio
> and newspapers). We are very pleased the media now look to us to speak
> following any floods.
> I braved it out and confronted the Minister for the Environment,
> Hillary Benn when he visited Worcester recently and as a direct result
> landed up on Newsnight. We have spoken on BBC news and various other
> news programmes giving advice to first time and newly flooded victims
> and have even appeared
> on GMTV warning about cowboy builders.
> I believe that Government must now put a huge injection of cash into ~
> as they call it 'flood risk management' I agree with Baroness Young,
> chief exec of the E/A that at least 1 billion is urgently needed. I
> think 'flood risk'
> should return to being called 'Flood defence' and government should also
> review the way flood defences are prioritised as a matter of urgency. We
> will be pressing them to do so. I also wonder whether having a dedicated
> 'Flood Agency' would be better than having many disparate ones. I guess
> this
> debate will run and run.
> We are pleased tha Defra have announced a grant pilot scheme for 5
> areas
> to
> pay for houses to be either/or made 'flood resistant' or 'flood resilient'
> and the NFF will be working closely with Defra for the delivery of this. I
> am pleased that one of our groups in Leeds is one of the areas selected
> for
> the grant scheme (They have just been flooded for a 3rd time in relatively
> quick succession) I promise you we will continue to lobby Defra so that
> once
> the pilots have been completed that they role them out at a national level
> and make them easy to access by all.
> I'm sorry but our newsletter will be very late this summer~ as we have
> just
> be overwhelmed with phone calls and need for our assistance. Two of our
> directors, Paul Hendy and Heather Shepherd, have been working constantly
> in
> South Yorkshire and I have been out and about as much as I could have been
> when not manning the constantly ringing help lines along side Amanda
> Davies
> our office manager (some of the phone calls we have taken have been very
> harrowing to say the least) and also speaking to the constant flow of
> media. In addition another director, Phil Awford, is Mayor of hard hit
> Tewkesbury, so he has been rushed off his feet wearing two hats supporting
> every one there.
> We still face a funding crisis but are in the process of becoming a
> charity
> and hopefully after such events as these last floods that funding will be
> easy to access in the near future. Fingers crossed as never has there been
> a
> greater need for us to exist.
> Finally, the government have announced a review of how the floods were
> managed. I think our views are invaluable in this, so please email me
> your thoughts and I will pass them on collectively.
> At times like this we have to make our voices heard and join together
> to
> try
> to influence change.
> With kind regards and again, I'm so sorry if you have been flooded.
> Please pass our thoughts and best wishes onto every member of your
> group.
> Mary Dhonau
> Coordinator
> The National Flood Forum,
> The Old Snuff Mill Warehouse
> Park Lane,
> Bewdley,
> DY12 2EL
> Direct line: 01905 351933
> Office: 01299 403055
> Mob 07754 592 534