LiveSOMERSET FLOODS: Deputy PM Nick Clegg says lack of dredging was "a mistake"

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Summary

  • Deputy PM Nick Clegg says lack of prolonged dredging "a mistake" but adds it is not the time for "finger-pointing" blame.
  • 20,000 sandbags to be deployed across Levels.
  • Petition calls for Environment Agency chief to be sacked.
  • Somerset braced for another week of wet weather.

5:27pm

5:03pm

TAUNTON concrete company S Morris Ltd came to the rescue of Somerset Levels residents unable to buy sand to fill sandbags to protect their homes.

The family-owned firm, based at Priorswood Industrial Estate, spotted an on-line appeal for help and sent three lorry-loads of sand to Stathe and Burrowbridge free of charge.

One was even dispatched at night as water levels rose and homeowners feared the worst.

A company spokesman said: “We heard they’d got bags but couldn’t get any sand to fill them.

“Over the last few days we’ve given them about 25 tonnes of sand to fill the sandbags.

“We couldn’t just stand by and do nothing when all they were trying to do was stop their homes from flooding.”

Somerset County Gazette:

Somerset County Gazette:

4:48pm

4:46pm

THE Environment Agency is stepping up its pumping operations on the Somerset Levels.

Thirteen temporary pumps have been brought in to maximise the amount of water that can be pumped away from the saturated ground.

Five will be installed at Beer Wall on the A372, and eight at Dunball over the next few days. These have been brought in from Holland.

John Rowlands of the Environment Agency said: "Increasing the volume of floodwater passing down the Sowy will assist in reducing river levels in the Rivers Parrett and Tone. 

"This operation will involve additional pumping on both the Sowy and the King’s Sedgemoor Drain."

For the first couple of days only the pumps at Dunball will run, with the aim of lowering water levels in the King’s Sedgemoor system first. 

Monks Leaze Clyce will then be opened gradually and more flow diverted down the Sowy, over pumping at Beer Wall Sluice and pumping out on all states of the tide at Dunball.

The A372 will be closed while the pumps are in operation.

For more information, ring the Environment Agency incident hotline number on 0800-807060.

4:22pm

Somerset County Gazette:

NURSES at Bishop’s Hull-based St Margaret’s Hospice have pulled out all the stops to make sure their patients haven’t suffered during the flooding.

The charity currently has 10 patients in areas that have been flooded, while some staff have also been stranded.

Clinical director Ann Lee said: “Our staff have been amazing during this difficult time.

“They’re working across the county to make sure cover is complete.

“If one member of staff hasn’t been able to get to a patient because the road is blocked, another has stepped in, regardless of the distance.

“And, if that wasn’t enough to ask of them, they’ve even slept over in the hospice to ensure the inpatients units remain fully manned.”

The charity is also working with all other support services, including NHS colleagues and domiciliary care services to ensure that patients are fully supported, even taking one patient into the hospice inpatient unit because her home carer had been unable to reach her.JOY Miliken, head of nursing braving flood water.

Head of nursing Joy Miliken is pictured braving flood water.

3:58pm

1:16pm

ROYAL Marines from 40 Commando, based at Norton Manor Camp, helped out by sandbagging over the weekend.

They are pictured assisting locals, including Taunton Deane councillor Tim Slattery.

Somerset County Gazette:

Somerset County Gazette:

12:37pm

Somerset County Gazette:

A SOMERSET Levels and Moors Authority would enable local people who know the area best to take control of the future of the area.

The call for the body to be set up comes from Cllr Sam Crabb, leader of the LibDem Opposition at Somerset County Council.

He said: “Why aren't the Conservatives at County Hall pushing for more support.

“It is simply not good enough what is going on - we can and should do far more.

“I have been informed by the Minister for Flooding Dan Rogerson MP that any help that Somerset County Council have asked for, they are getting, so why aren't we asking for more help and support?

“I am pleased that a motion passed by LibDem Regional Conference calling on the Government to establish Somerset Levels and Moors Authority - this will mean local representatives who know the area best can take control of the future of this area.

“Lots of people are offering help and many are working hard to support those that need it, but clearly a more joined up approach was needed from the start."

Cllr Justine Baker - (pictured front right working with FLAG volunteers) - who is standing for the LibDems in Bridgwater and West Somerset at the next General Election, said she has been helping local people as “the situation is getting worse daily."

She praised the “inspiring” work of the Flooding on the Levels Action Group (FLAG) and offers of help from across the country.

But Mrs Baker added: “Why has it been left to groups like FLAG to take on this massive burden, when many of them have their own homes, farms and businesses flooded themselves?

“The councils should and can do far more. I am angry and upset for residents who are not getting the help they need.

“However the people of Somerset owe FLAG and all those that have donated and helped a massive thank you.”

12:26pm

THE Royal Agricultural Benevolent Institution is offering emergency grants to help farmers, farm workers and their families through the crisis.

RABI’s Paul Burrows said: “We are contacting those people in the area we have supported in the past to ask if we can provide additional help.

“We haven’t had many new applications yet because, as we usually find in a crisis, people are currently working every hour of the day, doing all they can to care for their livestock and protect their property and not yet dealing with its financial impact on them and their family.

“We expect more calls to come in when the immediate crisis is over and people start to take stock of the situation and how it affects their future income, viability and welfare.

“Our regional manager in Somerset is already working closely with the NFU and other organisations so that we can advise people about the sources of help available, including the provision of animal feed, and our welfare officer is standing by.

“We are also continuing to work closely and in collaboration with Farm Community Network (FCN) as part of the Farming Help charities.

“In readiness for more calls we have fast-tracked our application process to make it easier and quicker for us to get money to eligible people, whether they are currently working in the industry, or are retired from farming and are also affected.

For help call 0300-3037373 or e-mail grants@rabi.org.uk

To donate to the farming charity visit www.rabi.org.uk

12:15pm

Somerset County Gazette:

(Nick Clegg, left, alongside David Heath, Somerton and Frome MP, and Sarah Yong, who is standing in Mr Heath's place as the LibDem candidate in the next General Election).

NICK Clegg said: “We need to, once this terrible emergency is over, learn the lessons from the past.

“The lack of dredging over a prolonged period of time was a mistake, but I don’t think it’s the time to start finger-pointing the blame.”

The Deputy Prime Minister said co-ordinated actions are needed “to deal with the immediate effect”, with “a whole lot of extra money” from the Government made available to tackle flooding issues.

The various agencies need to work together to an agreed plan to deal with the problems on the Somerset Levels, added Mr Clegg.

He said: “I have met people who quite rightly feel very upset, who are very worried about their own property and their own livelihoods.

“But I have met people doing extreme things for their families, for their friends, for their businesses."

He said he had spoken to a farmer whose land was under almost nine feet of water, who was worried but “very resilient and gracious”, as well as members of FLAG and other volunteers.

“They haven’t slept much...they are a wonderful example of people volunteering,” added Mr Clegg.

12:06pm

Somerset County Gazette:

NICK Clegg met with Nicola and Jonathan Coates in Stoke St Gregory to discuss the effect the floods have had on their business, the Willow and Wetlands Visitor Centre.

Taunton Deane MP Jeremy Browne went with Mr Clegg to the family's home for private discussions over breakfast before Mr Coates took the Deputy Prime Minister to see the damage to the Wetlands visitor centre.

Mr Clegg than visited Airtech, a company in Burrowbridge that has been affected by transport links being cut off, which has in turn affected the company's ability to get staff in to work easily.

Accompanied by Mr Browne, he met John Davison, the owner, his wife and staff working there.

He then popped into the Flood Action Group headquarters in Stoke St Gregory to thank volunteers for all the  important work they are doing.

Afterwards, he saw the effects of the floods on homes in the Burrowbridge area.

After that he had a meeting at The Riverside Cafe in Langport with David Heath and representatives from the internal drainage board to discuss longer term dredging and draining plans for the area.

11:28am

11:27am

11:23am

HE has been in Burrowbridge and in Langport, alongside David Heath, Somerton and Frome MP, and Sarah Yong, who is standing in Mr Heath's place as the LibDem candidate in the next General Election. 

Mr Clegg said: "I have met people who quite rightly feel very upset, who are very worried about their own property and their own livelihoods.

"But I have met people doing extreme things for their families, for their friends, for their businesses."

11:23am

MR Clegg came down overnight and has been meeting business people and flood victims.

He has told them that money will be available to deal with the immediate emergency. 

9:16am

DEPUTY Prime Minister Nick Clegg is the latest senior politician to visit Somerset.

He has been seen in Burrowbridge this morning. 

8:58am

A GROUP of Somerset flood victims have launched a petition calling for Environment Agency chairman Chris Smith to be sacked.

They say they are infuriated by Lord Smith's refusal to apologise for the devastation caused by the Agency’s decision 20 years ago to stop dredging rivers on the Somerset Levels.

The petition is being organised by master butcher Malcolm Pyne, from North Petherton, near Bridgwater.

His parents have had to leave their flooded home in the nearby village of Fordgate, and the beef farmer who supplies his shop has had to move his animals miles away because the land where they normally graze is under five feet of water.

Mr Pyne, who has also provided accommodation for a young family forced out of their home by the floods, said following Lord Smith's visit to Somerset on Friday: “To come down and see what devastation has been caused and then to try to defend and even praise the Environment Agency was tantamount to laughing in the face of the flood victims."
 

8:53am

A MEMBER of the Burnham Area Rescue Boat charity in Moorland. 

Somerset County Gazette:

8:52am

SOMERSET County Council says another 20,000 sandbags are ready to be deployed to communities across the Levels.

Its staff have worked alongside Royal Marines from 40 Commando, near Taunton, over the weekend to prepare the sandbags.

Somerset County Council leader John Osman said: “Our main aim is to keep residents and their property as safe as possible.

"These additional 20,000 sandbags will help towards these efforts.

"Floodwater is still rising and more than 150 homes are at risk of flooding in Somerset.

"We are working tirelessly 24/7 to ensure residents are safe, our roads are as clear as they can be in these difficult circumstances, schools are open, school buses can operate and vulnerable people receive the care and services they need.”

A Ministry of Defence spokesperson said: “Military personnel, currently mostly Royal Marines, continue to provide support in Somerset in areas affected by floods as part of cross-Government and multi-agency relief efforts.

“As the Prime Minister has said, all available resources are being brought to bear to help those still struggling as a result of the floods.”

 

Comments (21)

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11:08am Mon 10 Feb 14

SamF92 says...

Needless to blame everything on Lord Smith. Yes the EA haven't been perfect, but what about the government that cut £45 million of their funding?
Needless to blame everything on Lord Smith. Yes the EA haven't been perfect, but what about the government that cut £45 million of their funding? SamF92
  • Score: 11

11:45am Mon 10 Feb 14

JoRo says...

How ironic that now the Somerset Levels are a major news item all these so called top politicians have now discovered where we are and are promising to help.
When Ian Liddell Grainger stood in Parliament and requested help he was totally ignored as were our other local MP's.
The levels have been suffering this for months and nothing was done, however comparatively minor flooding in the Thames valley receives immediate attention.
Any flooding of homes etc. is disastrous but your distance from Westminster should not be a deciding factor in if your are helped or left to your own defences.
We are supposed to be a modern developed country and yet catastrophes such as this are allowed to happen. If this were happening in a third world country the government would be sending billions of Pounds in aid.
Perhaps it s time we looked at where our money is being spent and on whom and remember charity begins at home.
How ironic that now the Somerset Levels are a major news item all these so called top politicians have now discovered where we are and are promising to help. When Ian Liddell Grainger stood in Parliament and requested help he was totally ignored as were our other local MP's. The levels have been suffering this for months and nothing was done, however comparatively minor flooding in the Thames valley receives immediate attention. Any flooding of homes etc. is disastrous but your distance from Westminster should not be a deciding factor in if your are helped or left to your own defences. We are supposed to be a modern developed country and yet catastrophes such as this are allowed to happen. If this were happening in a third world country the government would be sending billions of Pounds in aid. Perhaps it s time we looked at where our money is being spent and on whom and remember charity begins at home. JoRo
  • Score: 30

12:06pm Mon 10 Feb 14

Useacarpark.com says...

After the 2012 floods Chris Smith put £400,000 on the table for dredging, the maximum the treasury would allow. So who's to blame?
After the 2012 floods Chris Smith put £400,000 on the table for dredging, the maximum the treasury would allow. So who's to blame? Useacarpark.com
  • Score: 7

1:04pm Mon 10 Feb 14

Anonone says...

The Wetlands Centre is in the name. Sympathies to all though.
The Wetlands Centre is in the name. Sympathies to all though. Anonone
  • Score: -3

1:36pm Mon 10 Feb 14

lordgodalmighty says...

surely its cheaper to build houses on stilits than to keep dredging every year ? in most developing countrys they build on stilts. obviously we are more primative than developing countrys.
surely its cheaper to build houses on stilits than to keep dredging every year ? in most developing countrys they build on stilts. obviously we are more primative than developing countrys. lordgodalmighty
  • Score: -4

2:47pm Mon 10 Feb 14

Gaston_J says...

Why does everyone think that you can defeat nature?
Back in the bronze and iron ages the people who lived on the Levels accepted that it was a wetland, lived on the high ground, and built trackways to get across the flooded parts.
Then the Romans arrived and started trying to drain the wetlands - and so it has been going on for close to 2000 years. Generation after generation has tried to dry the place out, and generation after generation has failed.
No doubt those who have gone before also blamed others when they were flooded out, rather than thinking that they might just have chosen to live in the wrong place.
Please forgive me if this seems unsympathetic, it isn't meant to be, but is there any possibility here of learning from experience?
Why does everyone think that you can defeat nature? Back in the bronze and iron ages the people who lived on the Levels accepted that it was a wetland, lived on the high ground, and built trackways to get across the flooded parts. Then the Romans arrived and started trying to drain the wetlands - and so it has been going on for close to 2000 years. Generation after generation has tried to dry the place out, and generation after generation has failed. No doubt those who have gone before also blamed others when they were flooded out, rather than thinking that they might just have chosen to live in the wrong place. Please forgive me if this seems unsympathetic, it isn't meant to be, but is there any possibility here of learning from experience? Gaston_J
  • Score: -2

3:19pm Mon 10 Feb 14

chachacha27 says...

I am still wondering when other countries are going to send us millions of pounds to help, like we do with them. As Somerset has now finally been noticed, maybe they will think twice about sending out our hard earned cash to other countries and actually spend it on the people who have given it! This country does annoy me so much when it comes to this, as you can probably tell!
I am still wondering when other countries are going to send us millions of pounds to help, like we do with them. As Somerset has now finally been noticed, maybe they will think twice about sending out our hard earned cash to other countries and actually spend it on the people who have given it! This country does annoy me so much when it comes to this, as you can probably tell! chachacha27
  • Score: 17

3:33pm Mon 10 Feb 14

twinkles says...

I thought they told people to stay away and not be 'flood tourists'? Seems every pillock with a title wants to come and have his photo taken in front of the water.

F*ck off and do what you should have done before. ORGANISE THE SODDING COUNTRY.
I thought they told people to stay away and not be 'flood tourists'? Seems every pillock with a title wants to come and have his photo taken in front of the water. F*ck off and do what you should have done before. ORGANISE THE SODDING COUNTRY. twinkles
  • Score: 14

3:37pm Mon 10 Feb 14

freddie_mercury_undercover_reporter says...

Nick Clegg and yesterday Nigel Farage along with all the other bandwagon jumpers including Liddell Grainger our very own publicity seeking sycophant will now, in hindsight say whatever they think is going to appeal most to score points against their opponents. Rather than TALK about this disaster after it has happened, If any of these self serving buffoons had anything about them they'd have DONE something about it beforehand. It's all very well stating that ILG highlighted this in the Commons and asked for help but isn't this what he is supposed to do for his constituents - it's his job. Most of the rest of the time he's anonymous! Muppets the lot of them
Nick Clegg and yesterday Nigel Farage along with all the other bandwagon jumpers including Liddell Grainger our very own publicity seeking sycophant will now, in hindsight say whatever they think is going to appeal most to score points against their opponents. Rather than TALK about this disaster after it has happened, If any of these self serving buffoons had anything about them they'd have DONE something about it beforehand. It's all very well stating that ILG highlighted this in the Commons and asked for help but isn't this what he is supposed to do for his constituents - it's his job. Most of the rest of the time he's anonymous! Muppets the lot of them freddie_mercury_undercover_reporter
  • Score: 16

3:50pm Mon 10 Feb 14

twinkles says...

http ://www.eureferendum.
com/blogview.aspx?bl
ogno=84683

(remove the space before the colon..)
http ://www.eureferendum. com/blogview.aspx?bl ogno=84683 (remove the space before the colon..) twinkles
  • Score: 0

9:42pm Mon 10 Feb 14

Jamesey says...

chachacha27 wrote:
I am still wondering when other countries are going to send us millions of pounds to help, like we do with them. As Somerset has now finally been noticed, maybe they will think twice about sending out our hard earned cash to other countries and actually spend it on the people who have given it! This country does annoy me so much when it comes to this, as you can probably tell!
Are you (and others) seriously equating the current flooding in Somerset to natural disasters that have happened in the developing world? Disasters where thousands have been killed and more made homeless? War and famine causing humanitarian crises?

While the flooding here is very distressing for those involved (and that includes some of my friends and family), most properties will be insured and the risk to life is low. Also, additional funds from central government have finally been promised.

I'll continue sending my donations to where they're really needed!
[quote][p][bold]chachacha27[/bold] wrote: I am still wondering when other countries are going to send us millions of pounds to help, like we do with them. As Somerset has now finally been noticed, maybe they will think twice about sending out our hard earned cash to other countries and actually spend it on the people who have given it! This country does annoy me so much when it comes to this, as you can probably tell![/p][/quote]Are you (and others) seriously equating the current flooding in Somerset to natural disasters that have happened in the developing world? Disasters where thousands have been killed and more made homeless? War and famine causing humanitarian crises? While the flooding here is very distressing for those involved (and that includes some of my friends and family), most properties will be insured and the risk to life is low. Also, additional funds from central government have finally been promised. I'll continue sending my donations to where they're really needed! Jamesey
  • Score: 4

5:36am Tue 11 Feb 14

jasminek says...

great news blog.. i like this article, but scared about the flooded people... http://proxyrental.n
et/
great news blog.. i like this article, but scared about the flooded people... http://proxyrental.n et/ jasminek
  • Score: -1

6:46am Tue 11 Feb 14

kevthefire says...

So who is the next customer at the new Somerset Spa!! these so called leaders of our country are next to useless! Posturing in their wellies.
They have no idea. it is about time the people of this country realise that the establishment no longer have the right to govern us. Time for a big change!
So who is the next customer at the new Somerset Spa!! these so called leaders of our country are next to useless! Posturing in their wellies. They have no idea. it is about time the people of this country realise that the establishment no longer have the right to govern us. Time for a big change! kevthefire
  • Score: 1

8:41am Tue 11 Feb 14

Anonone says...

kevthefire
If you know so much, how about standing for election. NO didn't think so!
kevthefire If you know so much, how about standing for election. NO didn't think so! Anonone
  • Score: -3

9:55am Tue 11 Feb 14

Simon Ball says...

We need a complete halt to foreign aid and spend some of the 11Billion we give away on some flood defences... ...I asked around in the pub yesterday ( completly random survey) to see what people thought about thiis ridiculous 11Billion we give away each year on overseas aid.... and I couldn't find a single person who agreed with it!
We need a complete halt to foreign aid and spend some of the 11Billion we give away on some flood defences... ...I asked around in the pub yesterday ( completly random survey) to see what people thought about thiis ridiculous 11Billion we give away each year on overseas aid.... and I couldn't find a single person who agreed with it! Simon Ball
  • Score: 2

10:50am Tue 11 Feb 14

Useacarpark.com says...

Simon Ball wrote:
We need a complete halt to foreign aid and spend some of the 11Billion we give away on some flood defences... ...I asked around in the pub yesterday ( completly random survey) to see what people thought about thiis ridiculous 11Billion we give away each year on overseas aid.... and I couldn't find a single person who agreed with it!
A lot of the foreign aid goes to countries where people are starving, dying, diesease ridden and have no clean drinking water etc. The average house price of Mulcheney is £330k, Burrowbridge £320k and Moorland £255k (Zoopla current prices) so we're not talking 3rd world are we? I can see this £10 million of tax payers money to be spent on defences being wasted as it will probably still flood if we ever have the same rainfall experienced this January. As for the food and money aid, the majority are still being paid and all should have building & contents insurance. Whilst this is a major inconvenience no one has died
[quote][p][bold]Simon Ball[/bold] wrote: We need a complete halt to foreign aid and spend some of the 11Billion we give away on some flood defences... ...I asked around in the pub yesterday ( completly random survey) to see what people thought about thiis ridiculous 11Billion we give away each year on overseas aid.... and I couldn't find a single person who agreed with it![/p][/quote]A lot of the foreign aid goes to countries where people are starving, dying, diesease ridden and have no clean drinking water etc. The average house price of Mulcheney is £330k, Burrowbridge £320k and Moorland £255k (Zoopla current prices) so we're not talking 3rd world are we? I can see this £10 million of tax payers money to be spent on defences being wasted as it will probably still flood if we ever have the same rainfall experienced this January. As for the food and money aid, the majority are still being paid and all should have building & contents insurance. Whilst this is a major inconvenience no one has died Useacarpark.com
  • Score: 6

11:19am Tue 11 Feb 14

Blue Owl says...

I agree 100%we need to reduce overseas aid budget! on Major flood defence work all around the Country, build new Pumping Stations permanently on the Moors and Pump into the King Sedgemoor Drain and De-Silted River Parrett, I have argued for 10 years with the Environment Agencies, as have others re De-silting and Dredging of the R. Parrett .
Typical that a Raving Freddie the underground Mercryreporter would typically have a go at our MP Iain L Graiger, who has down what he was elected to do like myself he also has not just recently jumped on the Bandwagon, as others who have visited Somerset, and Moorland when they could download it on their Gps Nav, to see where we were outside the Big Metropolis, Lindon.
Who had their Thames Flood Barrier built !!! how many Years ago and at what Cost £ Billions!!!!! I'm surprised N Farage, knew where to come, UKIP, voters, will at least know what he looks like in his Tweeds And Waders, now that's wot u call a photo publicity poser!!!!!!!!!
Perhaps, now as a result of this Tragedy for the residents of our County, we will get the River Parrett Sluice, the Rivers Dredged, a road onto of the Sluice to deal with the Extra EDF Traffic for Hinckley C Construction, the Much needed infrastructure Bridgwater By - Pass, that I have Called for, but alas, only 158 people, deem this to be important, the last time I looked at the E Petition, last week..........So if the residents of even Bridgwater, cannot be bothered to click on the Petition Website, 50 thousand residents we have in Sedgemoor, You Ought To Be Ashamed Of yourselves, for not Supporting what we all know is needed, it will be too too late in 3 years time when the HGV start Rolling up to 800 movements a day 24/7 plus the worker Transport Buses, and the Queues off the Motorway Junction from a 90 Minute Radius that the EDF Workers will travel from to daily get to the Park and Rides Initially @ j 24, then @ Dunball J 23........through our Town. All to meet @ Quantock Rd /NDR roundabout !!! Bloody great Logistical Planning by EDF And Somerset C C. But we are only Bridgwater, not the County Town Of Taunton, we can be Grid Locked, the Junction Changes proposed through our Town, will give Longer time Flows to Hinkley HGV Routes , To the Negative Detriment of the rest of us going about our Businesseses and private journeys journeys in the Day and evenings. But the HGV's will still be operating 24 /7 through the nights disturbibuping residents on the Routes to Cannington......this is not Scare Tactics ,,This is the reality, with upto 1050 resident Workers living in Campus Block Accom on Bath Rd, with little or No Facilities for evening Entertainment, etc.........
Go on Undercover reporter, Post something relevant now !!!!!
You are A Joke !!!
David L Preece
Blue-Owl
Conservative And Proud to be!!
I agree 100%we need to reduce overseas aid budget! on Major flood defence work all around the Country, build new Pumping Stations permanently on the Moors and Pump into the King Sedgemoor Drain and De-Silted River Parrett, I have argued for 10 years with the Environment Agencies, as have others re De-silting and Dredging of the R. Parrett . Typical that a Raving Freddie the underground Mercryreporter would typically have a go at our MP Iain L Graiger, who has down what he was elected to do like myself he also has not just recently jumped on the Bandwagon, as others who have visited Somerset, and Moorland when they could download it on their Gps Nav, to see where we were outside the Big Metropolis, Lindon. Who had their Thames Flood Barrier built !!! how many Years ago and at what Cost £ Billions!!!!! I'm surprised N Farage, knew where to come, UKIP, voters, will at least know what he looks like in his Tweeds And Waders, now that's wot u call a photo publicity poser!!!!!!!!! Perhaps, now as a result of this Tragedy for the residents of our County, we will get the River Parrett Sluice, the Rivers Dredged, a road onto of the Sluice to deal with the Extra EDF Traffic for Hinckley C Construction, the Much needed infrastructure Bridgwater By - Pass, that I have Called for, but alas, only 158 people, deem this to be important, the last time I looked at the E Petition, last week..........So if the residents of even Bridgwater, cannot be bothered to click on the Petition Website, 50 thousand residents we have in Sedgemoor, You Ought To Be Ashamed Of yourselves, for not Supporting what we all know is needed, it will be too too late in 3 years time when the HGV start Rolling up to 800 movements a day 24/7 plus the worker Transport Buses, and the Queues off the Motorway Junction from a 90 Minute Radius that the EDF Workers will travel from to daily get to the Park and Rides Initially @ j 24, then @ Dunball J 23........through our Town. All to meet @ Quantock Rd /NDR roundabout !!! Bloody great Logistical Planning by EDF And Somerset C C. But we are only Bridgwater, not the County Town Of Taunton, we can be Grid Locked, the Junction Changes proposed through our Town, will give Longer time Flows to Hinkley HGV Routes , To the Negative Detriment of the rest of us going about our Businesseses and private journeys journeys in the Day and evenings. But the HGV's will still be operating 24 /7 through the nights disturbibuping residents on the Routes to Cannington......this is not Scare Tactics ,,This is the reality, with upto 1050 resident Workers living in Campus Block Accom on Bath Rd, with little or No Facilities for evening Entertainment, etc......... Go on Undercover reporter, Post something relevant now !!!!! You are A Joke !!! David L Preece Blue-Owl Conservative And Proud to be!! Blue Owl
  • Score: -5

8:11pm Tue 11 Feb 14

Somerset;SocialistParty says...

Somerset residents need fully-funded environmental planning

A member of he Somerset branch of the Socialist Party writes

Residents in Somerset still find their homes underwater four weeks after the initial floods. Villages on the Somerset Levels have been most affected, and while communities expect some flooding in these areas, the affect of government cuts and climate change have meant these "once in a hundred years events" are happening every year.

This week Owen Patterson, the Tory environment secretary, visited Somerset to witness the damage himself. He left without speaking to any residents and has also made misleading statements, saying that the Coalition has spent more money on flood prevention than the previous Labour government. This is untrue.

The reason why this year's flooding has been so severe is because the river Parrett, where the flood water is supposed to drain into, has not been dredged. This is obviously due to the huge cuts to the Environment Agency - reportedly up to 40%. What makes this worse is that these dangers were already highlighted in a previous flooding plan written last year. The Con-Dem coalition has ignored this, and the wider concern about flooding, in favour of their austerity agenda. This is madness when put in the context of climate change.

Somerset residents don't need vacuous statements from visiting ministers. We need fully-funded environmental planning, which can try to mitigate the problems of climate change, not exacerbate them. However, all the three main parties support cuts; to the Environment Agency as well as the NHS, education and councils. We need a new party that not only provides funding for environmental planning, but also uses a socialist plan of production to dramatically reduce carbon dioxide emissions and pollution in order to reduce climate change.

This version of this article was first posted on the Socialist Party website on 28 January 2014 and may vary slightly from the version subsequently printed in The Socialist.

For more information; or to join the Socialist Party, visit: www.socialistparty.o
.uk
Somerset residents need fully-funded environmental planning A member of he Somerset branch of the Socialist Party writes Residents in Somerset still find their homes underwater four weeks after the initial floods. Villages on the Somerset Levels have been most affected, and while communities expect some flooding in these areas, the affect of government cuts and climate change have meant these "once in a hundred years events" are happening every year. This week Owen Patterson, the Tory environment secretary, visited Somerset to witness the damage himself. He left without speaking to any residents and has also made misleading statements, saying that the Coalition has spent more money on flood prevention than the previous Labour government. This is untrue. The reason why this year's flooding has been so severe is because the river Parrett, where the flood water is supposed to drain into, has not been dredged. This is obviously due to the huge cuts to the Environment Agency - reportedly up to 40%. What makes this worse is that these dangers were already highlighted in a previous flooding plan written last year. The Con-Dem coalition has ignored this, and the wider concern about flooding, in favour of their austerity agenda. This is madness when put in the context of climate change. Somerset residents don't need vacuous statements from visiting ministers. We need fully-funded environmental planning, which can try to mitigate the problems of climate change, not exacerbate them. However, all the three main parties support cuts; to the Environment Agency as well as the NHS, education and councils. We need a new party that not only provides funding for environmental planning, but also uses a socialist plan of production to dramatically reduce carbon dioxide emissions and pollution in order to reduce climate change. This version of this article was first posted on the Socialist Party website on 28 January 2014 and may vary slightly from the version subsequently printed in The Socialist. For more information; or to join the Socialist Party, visit: www.socialistparty.o .uk Somerset;SocialistParty
  • Score: -1

9:08am Wed 12 Feb 14

bluebanana says...

JoRo wrote:
How ironic that now the Somerset Levels are a major news item all these so called top politicians have now discovered where we are and are promising to help.
When Ian Liddell Grainger stood in Parliament and requested help he was totally ignored as were our other local MP's.
The levels have been suffering this for months and nothing was done, however comparatively minor flooding in the Thames valley receives immediate attention.
Any flooding of homes etc. is disastrous but your distance from Westminster should not be a deciding factor in if your are helped or left to your own defences.
We are supposed to be a modern developed country and yet catastrophes such as this are allowed to happen. If this were happening in a third world country the government would be sending billions of Pounds in aid.
Perhaps it s time we looked at where our money is being spent and on whom and remember charity begins at home.
"comparitively minor flooding in the Thames Valley"?! There are thousands of properties flooded from the Thames so hardly minor! Yes, the flooding may last longer in Somerset but there are relatively few properties affected in comparison - and the levels are designed to flood naturally anyway. Seems that hypocrite, arrogant, self important loud mouth Liddell grainger has had an effect on some of you. Dont forget he demanded that money was NOT spent on new flood defences not so long ago!
[quote][p][bold]JoRo[/bold] wrote: How ironic that now the Somerset Levels are a major news item all these so called top politicians have now discovered where we are and are promising to help. When Ian Liddell Grainger stood in Parliament and requested help he was totally ignored as were our other local MP's. The levels have been suffering this for months and nothing was done, however comparatively minor flooding in the Thames valley receives immediate attention. Any flooding of homes etc. is disastrous but your distance from Westminster should not be a deciding factor in if your are helped or left to your own defences. We are supposed to be a modern developed country and yet catastrophes such as this are allowed to happen. If this were happening in a third world country the government would be sending billions of Pounds in aid. Perhaps it s time we looked at where our money is being spent and on whom and remember charity begins at home.[/p][/quote]"comparitively minor flooding in the Thames Valley"?! There are thousands of properties flooded from the Thames so hardly minor! Yes, the flooding may last longer in Somerset but there are relatively few properties affected in comparison - and the levels are designed to flood naturally anyway. Seems that hypocrite, arrogant, self important loud mouth Liddell grainger has had an effect on some of you. Dont forget he demanded that money was NOT spent on new flood defences not so long ago! bluebanana
  • Score: 5

6:17pm Wed 12 Feb 14

freddie_mercury_undercover_reporter says...

Blue Owl wrote:
I agree 100%we need to reduce overseas aid budget! on Major flood defence work all around the Country, build new Pumping Stations permanently on the Moors and Pump into the King Sedgemoor Drain and De-Silted River Parrett, I have argued for 10 years with the Environment Agencies, as have others re De-silting and Dredging of the R. Parrett .
Typical that a Raving Freddie the underground Mercryreporter would typically have a go at our MP Iain L Graiger, who has down what he was elected to do like myself he also has not just recently jumped on the Bandwagon, as others who have visited Somerset, and Moorland when they could download it on their Gps Nav, to see where we were outside the Big Metropolis, Lindon.
Who had their Thames Flood Barrier built !!! how many Years ago and at what Cost £ Billions!!!!! I'm surprised N Farage, knew where to come, UKIP, voters, will at least know what he looks like in his Tweeds And Waders, now that's wot u call a photo publicity poser!!!!!!!!!
Perhaps, now as a result of this Tragedy for the residents of our County, we will get the River Parrett Sluice, the Rivers Dredged, a road onto of the Sluice to deal with the Extra EDF Traffic for Hinckley C Construction, the Much needed infrastructure Bridgwater By - Pass, that I have Called for, but alas, only 158 people, deem this to be important, the last time I looked at the E Petition, last week..........So if the residents of even Bridgwater, cannot be bothered to click on the Petition Website, 50 thousand residents we have in Sedgemoor, You Ought To Be Ashamed Of yourselves, for not Supporting what we all know is needed, it will be too too late in 3 years time when the HGV start Rolling up to 800 movements a day 24/7 plus the worker Transport Buses, and the Queues off the Motorway Junction from a 90 Minute Radius that the EDF Workers will travel from to daily get to the Park and Rides Initially @ j 24, then @ Dunball J 23........through our Town. All to meet @ Quantock Rd /NDR roundabout !!! Bloody great Logistical Planning by EDF And Somerset C C. But we are only Bridgwater, not the County Town Of Taunton, we can be Grid Locked, the Junction Changes proposed through our Town, will give Longer time Flows to Hinkley HGV Routes , To the Negative Detriment of the rest of us going about our Businesseses and private journeys journeys in the Day and evenings. But the HGV's will still be operating 24 /7 through the nights disturbibuping residents on the Routes to Cannington......this is not Scare Tactics ,,This is the reality, with upto 1050 resident Workers living in Campus Block Accom on Bath Rd, with little or No Facilities for evening Entertainment, etc.........
Go on Undercover reporter, Post something relevant now !!!!!
You are A Joke !!!
David L Preece
Blue-Owl
Conservative And Proud to be!!
Hi again Dave (I hope you dont mind me calling you Dave only you do seem to have warmed to me a little).

I'm always so impressed with your facts and figures - you really are something of a polymath! The way you convey your thoughts on the written page is also something to behold - your charm and wit shines through like a giant beacon. Personally I cannot for the life of me understand why people seem to dislike your input because you are obviously such a level headed, reasonable man.

Oh well, I'll always be ft here for you if you need a shoulder x
[quote][p][bold]Blue Owl[/bold] wrote: I agree 100%we need to reduce overseas aid budget! on Major flood defence work all around the Country, build new Pumping Stations permanently on the Moors and Pump into the King Sedgemoor Drain and De-Silted River Parrett, I have argued for 10 years with the Environment Agencies, as have others re De-silting and Dredging of the R. Parrett . Typical that a Raving Freddie the underground Mercryreporter would typically have a go at our MP Iain L Graiger, who has down what he was elected to do like myself he also has not just recently jumped on the Bandwagon, as others who have visited Somerset, and Moorland when they could download it on their Gps Nav, to see where we were outside the Big Metropolis, Lindon. Who had their Thames Flood Barrier built !!! how many Years ago and at what Cost £ Billions!!!!! I'm surprised N Farage, knew where to come, UKIP, voters, will at least know what he looks like in his Tweeds And Waders, now that's wot u call a photo publicity poser!!!!!!!!! Perhaps, now as a result of this Tragedy for the residents of our County, we will get the River Parrett Sluice, the Rivers Dredged, a road onto of the Sluice to deal with the Extra EDF Traffic for Hinckley C Construction, the Much needed infrastructure Bridgwater By - Pass, that I have Called for, but alas, only 158 people, deem this to be important, the last time I looked at the E Petition, last week..........So if the residents of even Bridgwater, cannot be bothered to click on the Petition Website, 50 thousand residents we have in Sedgemoor, You Ought To Be Ashamed Of yourselves, for not Supporting what we all know is needed, it will be too too late in 3 years time when the HGV start Rolling up to 800 movements a day 24/7 plus the worker Transport Buses, and the Queues off the Motorway Junction from a 90 Minute Radius that the EDF Workers will travel from to daily get to the Park and Rides Initially @ j 24, then @ Dunball J 23........through our Town. All to meet @ Quantock Rd /NDR roundabout !!! Bloody great Logistical Planning by EDF And Somerset C C. But we are only Bridgwater, not the County Town Of Taunton, we can be Grid Locked, the Junction Changes proposed through our Town, will give Longer time Flows to Hinkley HGV Routes , To the Negative Detriment of the rest of us going about our Businesseses and private journeys journeys in the Day and evenings. But the HGV's will still be operating 24 /7 through the nights disturbibuping residents on the Routes to Cannington......this is not Scare Tactics ,,This is the reality, with upto 1050 resident Workers living in Campus Block Accom on Bath Rd, with little or No Facilities for evening Entertainment, etc......... Go on Undercover reporter, Post something relevant now !!!!! You are A Joke !!! David L Preece Blue-Owl Conservative And Proud to be!![/p][/quote]Hi again Dave (I hope you dont mind me calling you Dave only you do seem to have warmed to me a little). I'm always so impressed with your facts and figures - you really are something of a polymath! The way you convey your thoughts on the written page is also something to behold - your charm and wit shines through like a giant beacon. Personally I cannot for the life of me understand why people seem to dislike your input because you are obviously such a level headed, reasonable man. Oh well, I'll always be ft here for you if you need a shoulder x freddie_mercury_undercover_reporter
  • Score: 2

1:24pm Thu 13 Feb 14

Somerset;SocialistParty says...

Floods misery: Government cuts to blame

While thousands of homes and shops are waist deep in toxic water, and flooding hits new areas, government ministers indulge in a blame game.

Stand-in environment minister Eric Pickles blamed the Environment Agency for not dredging rivers, while the department's incapacitated minister Owen Paterson was reportedly raging to Prime Minister David Cameron over Pickles' attacks.

In reality, the entire government is to blame for a lack of preparation and its outrageously inadequate response.

After all, climate change scientists have been warning for years about the expected increased frequency of extreme weather events - including unprecedented rainfall - caused by human induced global warming.

Moreover, instead of investing in measures that have enormous potential to defend people, land and property against flooding, the government has pursued a vicious austerity agenda of public spending cuts.

These cuts have been borne heavily by the Environment Agency, including its budget for flood prevention.

Incredibly, on top of previous cuts, some 1,500 agency jobs (15% of the workforce), including 550 jobs in flood prevention, are due to be axed by October.

Yet the cost to people's homes and the country's ruined infrastructure will run into hundreds of millions of pounds.

The floods have exposed how this government puts the interests of a rich elite above those of a long-suffering public.

It's high time that these 'Eton millionaires' are booted out and an environmentally sustainable plan of flood defences and infrastructure is put in place.

Don't just get angry get organised!

For more information, or to join the Socialist Party, visit: www.socialistparty.o
rg.uk
Floods misery: Government cuts to blame While thousands of homes and shops are waist deep in toxic water, and flooding hits new areas, government ministers indulge in a blame game. Stand-in environment minister Eric Pickles blamed the Environment Agency for not dredging rivers, while the department's incapacitated minister Owen Paterson was reportedly raging to Prime Minister David Cameron over Pickles' attacks. In reality, the entire government is to blame for a lack of preparation and its outrageously inadequate response. After all, climate change scientists have been warning for years about the expected increased frequency of extreme weather events - including unprecedented rainfall - caused by human induced global warming. Moreover, instead of investing in measures that have enormous potential to defend people, land and property against flooding, the government has pursued a vicious austerity agenda of public spending cuts. These cuts have been borne heavily by the Environment Agency, including its budget for flood prevention. Incredibly, on top of previous cuts, some 1,500 agency jobs (15% of the workforce), including 550 jobs in flood prevention, are due to be axed by October. Yet the cost to people's homes and the country's ruined infrastructure will run into hundreds of millions of pounds. The floods have exposed how this government puts the interests of a rich elite above those of a long-suffering public. It's high time that these 'Eton millionaires' are booted out and an environmentally sustainable plan of flood defences and infrastructure is put in place. Don't just get angry get organised! For more information, or to join the Socialist Party, visit: www.socialistparty.o rg.uk Somerset;SocialistParty
  • Score: 0

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