Yesterday I attended the Norfolk Strategic Flooding Alliance Meeting as the Representative of the Town and Parish council’ tier of local government. The other tiers were also represented, as were nearly all the agencies concerned in one way or another with flooding and water management.
Norfolk ALC is the only organisation that can represent our interests and the other agencies are well aware that we (and our residents of course) are right at the front line.
Making sure that the concerns and interests of our tier of local government are voiced and considered at important meetings like this is one of the many things that Norfolk ALC does – indeed there is no other organisation which can do this.
As most parishes in Norfolk were affected in one way or another by flooding at the turn of the year and are concerned about the likely recurrence of similar events in the future, thought you might all like to have a brief report of where we are at the moment
Leaflet and One Emergency Number
- It has been agreed that these will be signed off at the next meeting at the end of May – which is good news.
- NCC has committed to producing the leaflets and having them delivered to every household in Norfolk. There will probably be two : a short one to be pinned up next to the phone or ‘pinned’ to the fridge with a magnet – one will be a longer ‘reference’ type leaflet.
- Help will be forthcoming to formulate and update plans – a lot from the Fire Brigade and us
- More are being organised and Lord Dannatt will speak at them
- Overall the short, medium and long term plans are emerging with the core being firmed up daily. Not surprisingly there are lots of loose ends to tie up because it is a hugely complex issue developing a plan which has to last many, many years. There were 51 people invited to the meeting representing probably 30 plus relevant organisations which gives you the idea of the complexity.
Key issues still to be properly addressed
- Planning : at the moment it is the hands of seven (City, District and Borough) planning authorities plus a little by the county, all of which are a tad constrained by national guidance & legislation which will take a lot longer to change.
- Enforcement of statutory duties. The current consensus is that as much as possible should be achieved by persuasion rather than enforcement.
- There was some discussion as to whether the alliance should also look at ameliorating the effects of drought but because it is a key part of what WRE has to consider, it was left on the table for the moment.
Hope this is useful information and hope to be able to give you really positive news in the next two months.
In the meanwhile if you have further suggestions or incidents that you feel have not been properly addressed, let me know and I will channel them to the secretariat for consideration by the alliance
With kind regards
John W Pennell
Director & Chairman of the Well-Being Initiative