Visit the city of Hull at the moment and you will see how proud they are to have adopted the title of ‘UK City of Culture’ for 2017. Look back to 2007 though and the city had coined a very different name – the ‘Forgotten City’. The name came about when the city experienced significant flooding due to unseasonal summer weather overwhelming drainage systems.
About the Floods Of 2007
On 25th June 2007, hours of rain fell on Hull and the surrounding areas of East Yorkshire. The resulting floods caused more than £40m worth of damage, impacted almost every one of the 98 schools in the city and affected over 10,000 properties. Some residents were still living in temporary accommodation more than a year after the flooding.
It all happened at a time when other parts of the UK were also experiencing extreme weather, and as a result many residents of Hull felt that they did not receive the attention that would have been afforded to those living elsewhere in the country. For that reason, the council’s then leader, Carl Minns, coined the term ‘the forgotten city’ and argued that “if this was Chelsea or Fulham, this would have been plastered all over the front pages for weeks".
Our Work in Hull
Since the Pitt Review was published, which looked at the impact of the floods in 2007, more than £50m has been spent on flood defences in Hull and East Yorkshire. The Environment Agency has also committed to spending a further £120m over the next four years.
In 2008, we protected a number of residential properties in Hull and in 2011 we returned to install flood protection at Reckitt Benckiser Group's pharmaceutical manufacturing facility where they make Nurofen. Other Reckitt Benckiser brands include Lemsip, Air Wick, Dettol and Durex to name a few! In March of this year we returned to their Hull factory to service their 26 barrier systems to ensure they are in excellent working condition.
Has Anything Changed?
In April of this year we published a blog which explain how the existing £6bn Environment Agency programme was being spent. We found that over a quarter of this investment was being spent in just two constituencies – Greenwich & Woolwich (£943,587,000) and Dartford (£792,865,000). Projects in these areas are expected to provide protection to 187,000 properties at an average cost of £10,000 per home. Not many would argue that this is a positive use of money.
However, we also found that in the Witney constituency of former Prime Minister, David Cameron, £8m is to be spent on a smaller project. £8m being spent that will provide protection to ZERO homes. It goes to show that the disparity that still exists between spending on flooding in the North compared to the South of the UK. How many homes in East Yorkshire could be protected against future flooding with that £8m?
If you think that your property could be at risk of flooding, we can help. Our flood barriers have been awarded the 2014 Kitemark accreditation, having demonstrated their ability to withstand even the most severe of flooding scenarios. To arrange a FREE survey of your property, call us on +44 (0) 1603 879977 or drop us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.