Minister sees floods recovery at first hand

Tale of disaster: Baroness Andrews, left, chats to Carol Brown and Michelle Shaw on Vere Road Picture: Barry Richardson
Tale of disaster: Baroness Andrews, left, chats to Carol Brown and Michelle Shaw on Vere Road Picture: Barry Richardson
COMMUNITIES Minister Baroness Andrews lent her support to flood-stricken Sheffield residents when she visited the city to survey the damage.
Baroness Kay Andrews met with residents of Vere Road in Hillsborough whose homes were devastated by the torrential floods in June.

She also spent time looking at damage to the infrastructure caused by the weather around Middlewood Road and discussed how the council and other agencies had coped with the aftermath.

Her visit came just over seven weeks after the horrendous weather which left two people dead and hundreds unable to live in their homes.

She met with residents still staying in temporary accommodation and praised Sheffield Council for its aid efforts.

"I have been speaking to those affected by the floods and to members of the local authority about how they reacted both during and after the flooding," she said.

"I really hope that these people will be able to return to their homes as soon as possible. I feel that money is being distributed quickly and fairly."

Mother-of-two Michelle Shaw, a resident of Vere Road, was one of those visited by Baroness Andrews.

Michelle, aged 42, had the entire ground floor of her house gutted by the floods and is currently in temporary accommodation on Herries Road.

"I am happy with the help we have received so far," she said.

"The temporary accommodation is fine but we have been told it could be six months before we can move back home.

"I am hoping to get back into the house by Christmas - I would really like that."

A total of 10 million of Government funding has been allocated for local authorities in flood-hit areas nationwide with the local authorities responsible for distributing the cash to those in need.

Sheffield Council leader Councillor Jan Wilson spent time with Baroness Andrews showing her how money had been spent and where further support was needed.

"The recent floods have led to major challenges for everyone but I have been really impressed at how local authorities, charities, businesses and local people in Sheffield have come together at this difficult time," added Baroness Andrews.

"The Government and its partners are in this for the long-haul. The recovery efforts will take some time before life gets back to normal but we are committed to doing all we can during this time in helping communities and businesses get back on their feet."

Coun Jan Wilson said: "I welcome this interest by the Government into the floods in Sheffield.

"It has been very useful to be able to show the Minister the recovery work that has so far been done but also what still needs tackling."

Last Updated: 15 August 2007 9:22 AM