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Summit announced to tackle Oxfordshire flooding solutions
1:55pm Monday 13th January 2014 in News
Organisations are to be invited to a multi-agency flooding summit taking place in March.
Deputy leader of Oxfordshire County Council Rodney Rose has this afternoon said he wants to make sure lessons are learned from the recent flooding across the county.
He said: "We have now had significant floods two years running and four times in the last decade, so we may have to face up to flooding as the ‘new normal’ in Oxfordshire.
"That is why I want to make sure that all the relevant organisations come together as soon as possible to learn lessons from these floods. We need to agree how we can work together to reduce the risk to homes, businesses and the transport links that are vital to our local economy.
Cllr Rose, who is responsible for flood risk management, said all the agencies have worked very well together.
He added: "It has brought the best in all our teams who have worked round the clock to keep people safe, protect property and, as far as possible, keep Oxfordshire moving. I’d like to thank everyone involved."
But he said once the clear up is complete he'd like to see a "sense of shared purpose" in reducing the risk of flooding in Oxfordshire in the future.
He said: "I will be inviting local and national organisations to a flooding summit on March 21.
"The aim of the summit is to bring together every organisation with a role in reducing the risk of flooding, and agree a way forward. We all know that public money for flood defences is limited, so it is very important that we put on a united front in Oxfordshire to get a share of whatever national investment is available, and to use it wisely to reduce risk of flooding.
"I welcome the Prime Minister’s recent acknowledgement that flood defences have to be improved. Many residents have found this out the hard way in Oxfordshire in the last few days and the risk of further flooding remains. Unfortunately we can’t guarantee that it won’t happen again, but as we can pledge to all residents that we will work together effectively to reduce the risk."