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Drax delight at £4 million flood relief in Weymouth

Richard Drax Motorbike

5:45pm 20th July 2018

South Dorset MP Richard Drax says he is delighted to have contributed towards securing £4 million for flood relief in Weymouth from DEFRA.

The Weymouth Harbour Wall Improvements in South Dorset will receive £1.2m from the £40m Floods Regeneration and Growth Fund, which will be added to the £2.8 million in Flood Defence Grant, also from DEFRA.

The £4 million in funding was awarded after intensive lobbying by Drax and local councillors.

Together with Councillor Jeff Cant, leader of Weymouth and Portland Borough Council, Drax met Ministers to discuss the urgent need for repairs to Weymouth's infrastructure.

Only last month, Drax asked Prime Minister Theresa May, at Prime Minister's Questions, to support a one-off grant to repair Weymouth's harbour walls and improve flood defences.

Describing the funds as "essential," he said they were needed before planning permission could be granted for redevelopment, which would in turn, create more businesses, jobs and homes.

"I am delighted at this wonderful news", says Drax.

"It is a huge boost for what has been a massive team effort. This is just the beginning but it allows us to put many plans into place and gain outline planning consent for the first phase of the £30 million scheme for Weymouth's regeneration. Every thing we do now will improve this beautiful old town; even the new flood defence walls will have walkways behind them, enhancing their value to local people."

"There are other funding sources we have in mind and we have high hopes that more will be forthcoming. As I have said before, there are several options, including the Coastal Erosion fund and a one-off grant from the Treasury. For now, this is a great start."

Ron Curtis, Flood Risk Manager of the Environment Agency, said:

"Defra's announcement today of £1.2m for Weymouth is great news. Weymouth has a long history of flooding and the investment will allow urgent repairs to the harbour wall. The funding announced today will benefit all those who live work and visit Weymouth and marks the start of a longer term programme of work to reduce flood risk in the town."

Cllr Jeff Cant, Leader of Weymouth & Portland Borough Council, said:

"This is great news for Weymouth & Portland. I am delighted that the Minister has responded so positively to our case. This funding will help to support the first phase of flood defence management and it is an important step forward to safeguarding Weymouth's future and boosting our local economy."

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