Council vows to find answers to flooding issue


Brian Cloke, centre, Tony Sprake, right, and others delivering sandbags at The Staithe in Bungay. - Credit: Judy Cloke

A town's councillors have confirmed they will work with other local authorities to find ways to protect itself after its worst flooding in 50 years.

Bungay was badly hit by flooding during the Christmas period, where 100mm of rainfall fell, four times higher than the average.

Dave O’Neill, a councillor on Bungay Town Council's Emergency Planning Committee, confirmed work was being done behind the scenes to address a way forward following the flooding.


Flooding hit Bungay, Earsham, Broome and surrounding areas on Christmas Eve - Credit: Stella Robinson

“We are working with other parishes and town councils in Norfolk and Suffolk to see what they are doing in terms of protecting themselves against future flooding.

“We have developed a list of questions that need answers from other authorities addressing why this flooding occurred. 

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“This includes the Waveney Lower Yare and Lothingland Internal Drainage Board, the District Council and Environment Agency. 

“Specifically we are seeking to put pressure on the Environment Agency to put out flood alerts more early and the Parish Council to be more proactive when flooding occurs. 

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"Questions also need to be addressed to East Suffolk Council about why no sandbags were available because they claim they are not environmentally friendly but hessian sandbags can be disposed of and the sand can be reused.

"They are used in other parts of the country and it's the only plastic ones that are environmentally damaging.”


Suffolk Fire and Rescue Service declared a major incident in Bungay after flooding on Christmas Eve - Credit: Suffolk Fire and Rescue

Also speaking at the meeting, Conservative MP Peter Aldous suggested causes of the flooding and ways forward.

"The main cause of this flooding was a period of heavy rain over a short period of time which is happening more frequently.

"Other causes were sluice gates blocked by branches and properties receiving flood warnings at different times.

"To move forward we need a register of all properties affected and work in partnership with the Environment Agency, local councils, the Broads Authority and the Waveney Lower Yare and Lothingland Internal Drainage Board."

Further propositions put forward at council were an enhanced flood plain, engineering works on the sluice gates and individual flood protections for properties in Bungay like those currently being worked on in Beccles.

Bungay Town Council will now formulate questions and ask for answers from the relevant authorities.

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