Footpath resurfacing delayed but gullies being cleaned in Foxwood

The footpath resurfacing works on Bellhouse Way are currently running about one week behind schedule. Affected frontagers have been advised of the new timetable

Good progress was made yesterday by the gulley cleaner operating in the Foxwood area. Good to see the Council getting ready for winter after the recent problems experienced in parts of the City with surface water.

Flooding in York – where to find information

The government produces maps which show which streets in the City are subject to surface water flooding risks.

Of course, as we saw this morning, other areas can be vulnerable if the capacity of drains is exceeded (and/or they are blocked).

You can access the information here: https://flood-warning-information.service.gov.uk/long-term-flood-risk

Real time flooding maps can be found via this link https://flood-warning-information.service.gov.uk/map

Real time river level gauges can be found here http://www.gaugemap.co.uk/#!Map

The York Council’s surface water management plan can be downloaded from this link http://www.york.gov.uk/download/downloads/id/11055/surface_water_management_plan.pdf

Flooding support deadline set to be 31 May 2017

Floods cost City £3.3 million

The deadline for York residents and businesses to apply for up to £5,000 flooding support is set to be agreed for 31 May 2017.

The national flood resilience grant has helped a wide range of homes and businesses prepare for future flood events, which follows the devastating floods in December 2015.

To-date the council has received 200 applications for support and approved funding for £758,000.

The Council and other authorities were criticised for a slow reaction following the floods on Boxing Day 2015. It was several weeks before financial help was made available through the Flood Disaster fund.and other initiatives.

Anyone who hasn’t yet asked for financial support can still do so.

The application form for the grant is available to complete online at www.york.gov.uk/FloodResilienceGrants .
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No immediate flooding fears in York despite heavy rain

York river level guages remain within normal limits despite recent heavy rain.

You can check river levels at the following web site http://www.gaugemap.co.uk/#!Map

Click to access river level guages

Click to access river level guages

Meanwhile the Environment Agency have confirmed details of the flood prevention project exhibitions that they plan for the City.

The exhibitions will take place on Friday and Saturday

floods-exhibition-25th-nov

Blocked gulleys blamed for recent flooding in east York

click to access

We warned about false economies 4 years ago. click to access

A report into flash flooding in York has blamed it partly on lack of gulley cleaning.

This will come as little surprise to readers of these pages.

We said in 2012, when the then Labour controlled Council decided to end routine gully cleaning, that it was a false economy.

So it has proved to be.

Credit the present Council who have acted to increase the cleaning regime but not quickly enough to prevent flooding in some areas in June.

The Council report reveals that as many as 50% of drains that have been inspected have been found to be blocked. A number of Yorkshire Water maintained drainage and sewer pipes are also blocked.  

£125k in capital funding, for “drainage hotspots”, has been made available by the Council.

Community centre in Chapelfields organises post flood clean out

The incredible generosity of residents immediately after the Boxing Day floods in the City has left a storage headache for some voluntary groups.

floods childs toyMore material was donated than could be used by victims and much of it has remained in storage for the last 6 months.

The materials issue parallels a similar situation with financial donations. The York (Floods) Disaster Fund has still to allocate to victims over half of the funds that have been donated to it. 

Most organisation are now trying to move on although for some – such as the still closed Jorvik centre – recovery may still take many more months

Space is needed at the Sanderson Community House in Chapelfields where officials say the time has come for a final clear out and an attempt to return the centre to its normal day to day use.

They have set a date for the clear out as tomorrow MONDAY 18 JULY from 8am until 4pm.

A message says, “We are Inviting community groups and charities to pop along and collect any of the following items:

  • Cleaning materials (Bleach, clothes, mop buckets, mops etc.)

    Sanderson House community centre

    Sanderson House community centre

  • Bedding
  • Tinned foods and cooking sauces
  • Drinks
  • Cereals and biscuits
  • Pasta, pot noodles
  • Baby products (Baby food, Nappies, wipes)
  • Toys and books
  • Toiletries

We are also looking for volunteers to help on the day, whether you are available for a couple of hours or the whole day your time will be appreciated.  Tasks will include; moving items, transporting boxes to venues across York and cleaning up the centre.

If you want to collect some of the items listed above or volunteer on 18 July, please contact Charlotte on charlotte.hadden@york.gov.uk or for further information call 07850 001 002.

For all those volunteers you will be plenty of refreshments and snacks to keep you going“.

An inquiry team is currently looking at all aspects of the flooding crisis which hit the City over the Christmas period.

Several organisations, including the Council and some charities, were criticised at the time for being slow to respond, leaving the gap to be filled by willing – but largely uncoordinated – volunteers.  It is this state of preparedness that should be one of the major issues under the Inquiries spotlight.

We hope that the materials donated and money collected will all now be put to good use. 

 

Four months after the big York floods

Independent chair and flood panel announced

City of York Council has today announced the independent chair and panel members who will lead on the inquiry into the recent flooding in York.

Floodpanelfinal

The Inquiry was called by the council’s leadership in January and subsequently agreed at the Executive in March to look at how the city coped with the recent floods and issues such as the information given to residents, the response of key organisations and the failure of the Foss Barrier on Boxing Day.

A budget of £50k has been set aside for the costs of the inquiry.

It is expected that representatives from key organisations will be asked to give their account of the floods to the inquiry team but that there will be a wider call for evidence from those who were affected and others who can assist the inquiry reaching its conclusion.

The lengthy delay in setting up the Inquiry means that some evidence may have been lost. Memories can fade quickly.
While the team selected do appear to have the necessary technical expertise to challenge the activities of the Environment Agency and other organisations most of the criticism on 26th and 27 December was directed at the Council’s leadership and various voluntary organisations who seemed to react slowly to the emerging crisis. Having an Inquiry team apparently selected by the four group Leaders – who themselves were noticeable by their absence on 26th December – may lead to some scepticism about the likely outcomes.

The Leaders of all four political groups at City of York Council  have said: “It’s important that as a local council we do everything we can to answer residents’ questions and ensure lessons can be learned for the future. This review will help us to get a much clearer picture of what happened and what steps need to be taken to try to prevent flooding like this in the future. We thank Ms Davies, Mr Waterhouse and Mr Toole for applying to lead on the inquiry and we look forward to working with them on this independent review.”

The independent chair and panel members include:

£1.3 million flood relief fund – payment details emerging

Four months after the devastating flooding which hit the City on 26th and 27th December 2015, details are only now emerging of how the £1.3 million York Disaster (Flood) Fund is being spent.

Two ridings reprt 18th April 2016

Click to access

Although most affected residents and businesses have now moved back into their flood hit properties, it appears that only £160,000 has been paid out to victims.

Most of the money – which includes matching funding from the government – has come from charitable trusts with the rest coming from corporate donations, individual gifts and fund raising.

The Fund’s administrators – the Two Ridings  Community Foundation – have now published a FAQ summary on their web site.

The posting (right) explains who can apply, for what, and also reveals that making vulnerable buildings watertight (more resilient) could qualify for grant aid (on top of the £5000 already announced by the Council) while damage to vehicles and outbuildings won’t be funded.

Application forms can be downloaded via this link http://www.trcf.org.uk/

Meanwhile the Council has still not revealed details of when its Inquiry into the flooding will start (or even who the members of the Inquiry team will be).

Clearly a report – and most importantly action arising from its conclusions – is still several months away.

The one piece of good news is that the Environment Agency have announced details of additional flood prevention work that they intend to do in the City over the next few years.

A meeting earlier in the week heard that extra investment would include:

  • £45m additional funding for work in York which will see around 15 schemes at different locations throughout York to upgrade raised defences and provide a consistent standard of protection for the City. This will better protect over 2,000 properties.
  • This is in addition to the £10m that has already been committed for repairs and upgrades to the Foss Barrier where work is planned to start in early April and be complete by December 2017.