Yesterday was a glorious day here in West Yorkshire so I decided to take a trip to the very pretty town of Hebden Bridge about 15 miles from where I live.
The town suffered dreadfully in the recent floods and I had heard that many of the businesses in the town had been decimated by what became a “tidal wave” of water sweeping all before it.
As I walked into the town there was a superficial normality to the place and I perhaps thought that the “devastation” had been over stated. However, as I made my way around the different streets I could see mud still splattered against house and shop walls, and I began to see the numerous sign in shop windows saying “closed due to flooding.”
Looking inside these shops there were chairs stacked on tables, some had been emptied and many were still coved in the aftermath of the flood, dirt and mud.
I saw a couple of places being completely renovated (possible they were the lucky ones with insurance!) but many stood empty or if not empty, much of what was inside had been ruined by the floodwater.
I spoke to a couple of shop owners who said that it had been demoralising as this was the third time the town had been hit by floods in the last 2 years. One lady said it had rained for three days non – stop and that at its height the floodwater was waste deep as it swept through the town.
Many of the shops displayed signs thanking the public for their help and support and a “fund” had been set up to try and help those who had been affected, and in particular those who had not been able to insure their properties.
It appears the government has made a small amount of money available to help those affected by the floods here in West Yorkshire, which is admirable. Grants of up to £100,000 are to be made available to support business in West Yorkshire hit by flooding over Christmas. The West Yorkshire Combined Authority has agreed a total business flood recovery fund of £5m.
It said grants could include cash to repair or buy new equipment, pay to restore flood-hit premises or help with relocation costs.The fund will be managed by the Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership.The money will come from the area’s regional growth fund allocation from the government for 2016/17.
I now read that David Cameron has pledged £1.2 billion additional funding for Syrian refugees in the Middle East.
Perhaps Mr. Cameron and some of his cabinet lackeys might like to pay a visit to Hebden Bridge and surrounding areas and explain how he can provide such an amount for refugees but nothing like that amount for British people who have suffered because of the floods. And whilst he is up here he might like to pop up to parts of Lancashire and Cumbria, similarly devastated by floods, and explain to them his £1.2 billion pledge whilst they get basically “sod all.”
David Cameron, you are a disgrace!
Photo1 courtesy of BBC, all other photographs (c) Kindadukish