A number of people have told me that the Environment Agency’s Littlehampton Sea Defences Building works have now been put indefinitely on hold.
Such is the power of rumor….
I have no idea as to whether this is true or not as there has been no communication from the EA since our last meeting.
At our last meeting it was agreed that we would meet again in January, my notes indicate circa week commencing 16th January, but there’s been no contact or no meeting, or no update.
In the absence of any official information, rumors are a natural side effect.
Neither has the Environment Agency addressed the very serious, and long overdue problem of how it will be dealing with business who are forced to cease trading as a direct result of their building works.
Although we have had some initial indications of how they’ll handle this problem – which quite literally amounts to do nothing, they’ve yet to come up with a workable sensible solution.
Let’s not forget also that despite the terrible rain falls, the snow and the appalling weather conditions, Pier Road and it’s environs haven’t flooded but other areas not too far away from us have. For example, parts of Felpham.
I question really whether any of the current flood defence proposals are necessary, or should I say, immediately necessary – as opposed to something that cannot be done once we’re through these extremely difficult economic times.
Let’s be brutally honest here –
The elderly, vulnerable and those in dire need of state support are seeing their care packages significantly reduced. Some hospitals are proposing that relatives be made to visit and feed and clean their loved ones. Prisons and police stations are closing. The number of police officers are being cut, as well as police pay being cut. Starting salaries for new police officers joining the force are now capped at £19,000. An insult to those who have to risk all to protect us.
Yet, the Environment Agency has got in excess of £12 million to build a big wall in Littleahmpton.
Is this really the time for such expenditure, given that the EA can provide no evidence in any of their documents of the risk of immediate flooding.
Sure, we’ve had flooding in South Terrace, Littlehampton last year just around the corner from Pier Road, but this had nothing to do with breached sea defences or rising sea levels.
Early indications are that the underground infrastructures were either poorly maintained, not maintained or entirely insufficient for the job in hand.
None of the EA’s proposed flood defences will make one jot of a difference to preventing the South Terrace area flooding again.
But then again what do we expect from an Agency where the advice to reduce flooding is to – Build a Snowman.
That gem came from Roy Stokes, one of the Environment Agencies spokesmen.
Only to be retracted later by another Environment Agency Spokewoman who said:
“But while building snowmen is great fun, sadly it is unlikely to make a significant difference to the overall rate at which the snow melts across the country and won’t protect your home from flooding.”
And they trust these people with £12 million pound budgets?