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Hit by the flooding? You might be able to get help

Written by: Emma Lunn
Homes and businesses affected by floods in some parts of the country may be entitled to financial help.

The Environment Agency (EA), emergency responders and local authorities are helping to protect people and properties following the flooding parts of Yorkshire, Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire and Lincolnshire this week.

There are currently 57 flood warnings and 137 flood alerts in place and there is increased predicted rainfall over parts of the country.

Approximately 14,400 properties have been protected by flood defences, including nearly 5,000 properties in South Yorkshire.

Farming Recovery Fund

The government has announced it will extend its Farming Recovery Fund to support farmers badly affected by the recent flooding across Yorkshire and the Midlands.

Flood-hit farmers in northern England will be able to apply for up to £25,000 in government grants to help them get back on their feet.

Through this scheme, farmers and land managers who have suffered uninsurable damage to their property will be able to apply for grants of between £500 and £25,000 to cover repair costs – whether that’s clearing debris or recovering damaged land.

Damage to business and property caused by flooding

If your business property has been damaged and is no longer habitable, you may be entitled to relief from business rates.

Additionally, households may be entitled to a Council Tax reduction if a domestic property is no longer habitable.

In both instances you should contact your local authority in the first instance – it will be able to give you further guidance.

In Doncaster, for example, two hardship schemes are available to residents and businesses whose households or business premises have been affected by flooding.

The Community Recovery Grant is a payment of up to £500 for each household affected by flooding. The grant is eligible for people where flood water entered the habitable areas or residence considered uninhabitable for any period of time due to the weather event.  However, the grant doesn’t provide funds for empty homes, second homes or student accommodation.

The Business Recovery Scheme is for businesses that have been directly impacted and have suffered a loss of trade due to the flooding that cannot be recovered from insurance. There is up to £2,500 for small and medium-sized business in affected areas.

Help from the Environment Agency and the military

Environment Agency teams, assisted by the military and emergency services, continue to work 24/7 to reduce the water levels in flood-hit communities, including Fishlake near Doncaster, and prepare them for further possible flood impacts today.

So far 38 pumps have been set up across South Yorkshire, including at eight separate locations in the Fishlake area, moving 50 million litres of water per hour to help protect homes and businesses.

The pumps have removed 1.25 million tonnes of water in the past 24 hours and this has helped to reduce water levels in the village from 2 metres to 0.3 metres – a decrease of 85 per cent.

Kate Marks, flood duty manager at the Environment Agency, said: “Heavy rain today is expected to cause river and surface water flooding across parts of England, continuing into tomorrow in some areas, as well as potentially contributing to ongoing flood impacts in Yorkshire, Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire and Lincolnshire.

“Our thoughts are with those communities who have been hit by floods and suffered the devastating effects over the past few days. Today we ask them to please remain vigilant and take steps to prepare for flooding by checking their flood risk regularly and making plans to stay safe.”

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