Press release

£266 million to be spent on new flood defences in Yorkshire

Homes in Leeds City Centre and West Hull will be better protected from floods thanks to six-year £2.3 billion flood defence programme.

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government


Homes in Leeds City Centre and West Hull will be better protected from floods thanks to an unprecedented six-year £2.3 billion flood defence programme, benefitting Yorkshire to the tune of £266 million, which has been announced by the government today.

The new flood defence scheme in Leeds, just one of 207 schemes in Yorkshire getting the green light today, is worth over £45 million and will deliver savings of more than £88 million to the local economy by protecting people’s homes and businesses.

Some examples of the schemes funded in the first two year construction phase in Yorkshire and north of the Humber include:

  • Leeds flood alleviation scheme: a partnership project, led by Leeds City Council, which will reduce the risk of flooding in the economic heart of the city, protecting over 50 homes and 154 businesses.
  • Willerby and Derringham flood alleviation scheme in West Hull. A partnership project led by East Riding of Yorkshire Council, which will see the creation of a series of lagoons for rainwater along the Great Gutter Valley to the west of Hull. When complete, the scheme will reduce flooding to over 8,000 properties.
  • On the Humber estuary £80 million will be spent on a range of projects. These form part of the continual and ongoing programme of investment as set out in the Humber Flood Risk Management Strategy.

Danny Alexander, the Chief Secretary to the Treasury said:

Protecting communities from the devastating effects of flooding is crucially important, so I have earmarked £266 million to protect homes and businesses across Yorkshire and north of the Humber.

Investing £2.3 billion to support 1,400 schemes across the country will protect 300,000 homes from the north-east to the south-west. As well as ensuring people’s safety and peace of mind it will also bring over £30 billion of economic benefit, making it great value for money as part of this government’s drive for a stronger economy and a fairer society.

Environment Secretary Elizabeth Truss said:

Flood protection is vital and under our plans the Humber estuary and great cities like Leeds will be better protected as we deliver 207 schemes across Yorkshire that will bring peace of mind to residents and businesses.

We are spending £3.2 billion in flood management and defences over the course of this parliament - half a billion pounds more than in the previous parliament. This, combined with the record level of investment in capital we have set out today, will improve protection to 465,000 homes and businesses by the end of the decade.

Environment Agency Chairman Sir Philip Dilley said:

Our priority is to do as much as we can with every pound of funding from government and local partners, we now expect to provide better flood protection to an additional 300,000 properties in England by the end of the decade. With one in six homes in England at risk of flooding, and recognising the risk of flooding can never be eliminated, we would also encourage people to take their own steps to prepare for flooding, for example by signing up to the Environment Agency’s free flood warning service. This first ever long-term investment programme will protect over 75,000 properties in Yorkshire alone and save the national economy £2.7 billion by 2021. The lifetime benefits of this investment will be even higher at over £30 billion. New schemes may also be added as the programme progresses.

Since the beginning of this parliament flood defence investment has improved protection to over 230,000 homes and over 580,000 acres of land. The new will protect at least another 300,000 homes in England by the end of the decade.

The investment programme was published alongside a new long term study from the Environment Agency, which shows that the planned investment will reduce overall flood and coastal erosion risk in England.

To see the national picture, visit the interactive Google map.

Published 2 December 2014