Council praised for flood support

Floods in Burnley Road, Todmorden.
Floods in Burnley Road, Todmorden.

A business leader toured the Calder Valley to see how traders had recovered from last year’s floods - just days after further downpours hit the area.

John Allan, chairman of the Federation of Small Businesses, praised the council for its help last year - but it remains to be seen what help will be available this time round.

“A lot of our members in the Calder Valley were badly affected by last year’s floods and the support given by Calderdale Council is commendable,” he said.

“The FSB would like to extend our thanks to the council for acting so swiftly and getting the much needed flood relief out to businesses and residents.”

However, he was critical of insurers, saying: “Insurance companies have been slow to pay out on policies and some of our members remained closed for five months.

“The flood relief (from the council) provided an extremely valuable buffer and we are immensely appreciative of this, especially considering that the council has been left with a £1.9m bill.”

The flood relief programme provided grant support for flood defence barriers and provided assistance with the clean-up operation.

During a tour of Hebden Bridge he visited business owners including Hannah Nunn, of Radiance, a lighting shop, and Marcus Doyle, of the Yorkshire Soap Company, which used the relief programme to pay for flood shutters to protect the shop.

The FSB tour was part of its Keep Trade Local campaign which aims to promote independent traders and encourage shoppers to support their local small businesses.

Around 90 properties suffered in last Monday’s flood.

Twelve businesses were affected included a gym, fish and chip shop and a pub.

A Calderdale Council spokesperson said it was still assessing the impact of last week’s floods on businesses and once completed it would be able to determine what support could be given.