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East Coast Sea Defences

Volume 523: debated on Monday 1 February 1954

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58.

asked the Minister of Agriculture if he is satisfied that, during the year which has elapsed since the great flood disaster, such progress has been made in the rebuilding and improvement of the sea defences that security against flooding is now, in all cases, greater than it was on the night of 31st January, 1953; and if he will make a statement.

59.

asked the Minister of Agriculture if he is satisfied with the progress made in repairing and strengthening the sea defences breached or weakened in the East Coast flood disaster a year ago; and whether he will make a statement.

River boards have made outstanding progress with the reconstruction and improvement of the sea defences damaged by last year's floods. The defences are now as good as, and in many places stronger than, they were before. Where they protect important urban and industrial areas or large areas of farm land they have been greatly improved. Work costing some £24 million has been undertaken and about £20 million worth is already completed; the remainder should be finished before the end of this year.The planning and execution of the work done in the past 12 months would normally take about 12 years to do. This achievement is a great credit to the river boards and all concerned. My right hon. Friend is satisfied that, if the exceptional conditions of a year ago occurred again, adequate protection would be given to all the main areas which were then flooded. The need for further works will be considered in the light of the report of the Waverley Committee, which we hope to have before Easter.