I am working hard on the in order to prevent the closure of the Alt-Crossens satellite pumping stations.
The anticipated closure of these stations is causing significant concerns about the potential flooding risk of agricultural land. Agriculture is an essential part of the economy of South Ribble and should be protected in any way possible.
I have attended meeting with the National Farmers Union and the Environment Agency, met with the Floods Minister, Rory Stewart, the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government and the neighbouring Member of Parliament Rosie Cooper. I am determined to escalate the issue as much as possible and have a number of future meetings lined up to continue to press for a suitable solution.
Those attending the meeting with the National Farmers Union felt the best solution was an Internal Drainage Board, but anomalies in existing legislation means that new Internal Drainage Boards are not offered the same funding as established ones. This is something I intend to query with the Minister in an attempt to seek an equitable resolution for my constituents.
I have also raised the issue in the House of Commons asking a question about the funding of Internal Drainage Board's and whether Network Rail would be able to absorb a portion of the cost, especially as their train line is at risk.
I will continue to do everything I can to protect the land and livelihood of my constituents.