POLITICIANS from across Bury have visited Parliament to call for government action and funding for flood defences.

Bury MPs Ivan Lewis and James Frith were joined by council leader Rishi Shori and Cllr Alan Quinn, cabinet member for the environment, to meet with Thérèse Coffey, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for the environment, yesterday.

The purpose of the meeting was to lobby for investment to unlock a £37 million flood defence scheme to protect the Radcliffe and Redvales areas, which were devastated by the Boxing Day floods in 2015.

Bury Council has pledged £2 million towards the scheme, but say they need government support to go any further.

The flood defence scheme has been jointly developed by the council and the Environment Agency since 2015.

It includes a mix of hard and soft engineering including flood barriers, flood plains and replacing bridges. The scheme covers an area from Bury Grammar School to Radcliffe.

The Grant in Aid (GiA), contributed via the Environment Agency from the Government's £2.5 billion capital funding, was described as 'insufficient in meeting the cost of adequate protection'.

But a further funding gap means plans cannot move forward.

Following the meeting yesterday, Mr Lewis said: “It’s been over 2 years since the Boxing Day floods. A huge amount of work has been done and we now have a deliverable scheme to protect hundreds of properties in Radcliffe.

“We should not forget the devastating impact that the floods had and human cost of not acting. The meeting with the Minister was positive and we hope to hear from soon. All that is required is the funding to make this happen.”

Leader of the Council and Radcliffe West Councillor Rishi Shori added: “Whilst these schemes should be fully funded by the Government, the Council has committed £2m to get the scheme moving.

“The Minister was sympathetic to our arguments that investing in flood defences and taking preventative measures would save millions for the public pursue in the long term, protect homes and support businesses.”