New flood action group set to highlight key objectives

NAWN 1402183AM1 A concerned Brian Percival next to the the River Wharfe. Picture : Adrian Murray. (1402183AM1)
NAWN 1402183AM1 A concerned Brian Percival next to the the River Wharfe. Picture : Adrian Murray. (1402183AM1)

Tadcaster is set to have its own flood action group which will be called on in times of crisis.

Businessmen Brian Percival and Nicky Eades are urging people to join the group which will hold its first meeting next week.

Nicky, of Bridge Street Dental Surgery, said: “The essence of flood avoidance is being prepared and an objective of the meeting is looking at the best ways of prevention.”

The practice has been flooded three times in the past two years and Nicky has been watching the levels of the River Wharfe this week.

He added: “Tadcaster is at risk now, heavy debris from upriver is blocking one of the bridge arches.”

The Tadcaster area Flood Action Group will deliver three key messages - being prepared, helping neighbours, working with flood agencies - that will be developed at the inaugural meeting at Tadcaster Business Centre on Thursday February 27 at 6.30pm.

Co-hosting the event will be Brian Percival, who is a Trustee of the National Flood Forum, Community Flood Action and local business man whose premises have been flooded in the past.

Quantity surveyor Brian told the News: “People should not expect the local council to provide all flood protection work immediately.

“Low cost solutions are now available and can be stored in readiness.”

Brian explained that he has written the definitive protocol for dealing with the after effects of flooding, setting out best ways of getting rapid remedial work.

With his position on the NFF he has a sound knowledge of the bigger flood position.

“The proposed Water Act as currently written is far from adequate and the insurance companies are being very slow in reacting to reduce insurance premiums where flood avoidance measures are in position.

“The general public are getting tired of the infighting between the politicians and the flood agencies, and too many politicians, at all levels, are taking disasters as simply photo opportunities and not tackling the fundamental question of providing relevant action and planning for future flooding.”

Businesses in Tadcaster were left counting the costs of flooding in the town in September 2012.

Torrential downpours which hit the area resulted in the closure of the bridge after the force of the swollen River Wharfe damaged the ageing structure.

With the town cut in two, shoppers faced a long diversion along the A64.