Lincolnshire

Wainfleet flooding: Clean-up 'could take months'

Aerial view of town Image copyright PA
Image caption The River Steeping burst its banks after the equivalent of about two months' rain fell in two days

Volunteers are being sought to put a flooded town "back on its feet" as the clean-up begins.

Emergency planners are starting the recovery phase of their operation after the last evacuated residents of Wainfleet, were allowed home on Friday.

More than 580 homes in and around the Lincolnshire town were evacuated after heavy rains led to the River Steeping bursting its banks on 12 June.

The team organising the clean-up said the operation could take months.

Steve Eason-Harris from the emergency planning team called for "anybody who wishes to volunteer to help put Wainfleet back on its feet".

Mr Eason-Harris said work was being done to ascertain which properties had been flooded and what help was needed.

Clean-up kits and assistance could then be provided. All cleaning would be done "sensitively" and things that were needed to be kept would be, he said.

Image caption The clean-up is also under way in nearby Thorpe St Peter
Image copyright Jean Hart
Image caption Wainfleet resident Jean Hart posted a picture of the flood waters in her bathroom

"Floodwater isn't nice and clean, it can be quite a dirty environment, this will take weeks into months for people to recover, it is a long-term job.

"It is traumatic, it is not just the initial event but living with further rain and the good old British summer time", he said.

Any volunteers would be registered, receive training and would be tasked as needed, he added.

Nearly 130 homes were flooded when the river burst its banks after the equivalent of about two months' rain fell over two days earlier in June, forcing 1,000 people out of their homes.

Image copyright Environment Agency
Image caption Repairs are starting on the collapsed river bank

The breach in the river bank was filled by helicopters dropping tonnes of ballast.

The Environment Agency has reinforced the temporary repairs and more permanent work is to be carried out over the next few weeks.

A volunteer hub is to open at Coronation Hall in the town.

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