Helen Morgan demands change after county excluded from floods fund

14 May 2024
Helen surveys local flooding

North Shropshire MP Helen Morgan has written to the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs to demand a change in Government policy on support for flood-hit farmers.

This comes after Shropshire was left off the list of areas where farmers are eligible to claim from the Farming Recovery Fund, aimed at supporting the agricultural sector in areas hit by record levels of flooding.

Joined by Westmoreland and Lonsdale MP Tim Farron, in whose Cumbrian constituency farmers are also unable to claim any support, Helen Morgan has asked the Secretary of State to ensure that ‘farmers have access to a long-term support scheme, properly adjusted to consider the realities of rural flooding’.

Helen added that she was ‘astounded that many are not eligible’ for the fund, which is only available to farmers in areas which are covered by the Flood Recovery Framework. The current framework makes it very difficult for rural areas to claim support due to the focus on properties which flood, rather than areas like in North Shropshire where flooding takes place over vast and sparse areas of land.

Helen Morgan, Liberal Democrat MP for North Shropshire, commented, “Flooding is a huge problem for farmers and rural residents across many parts of North Shropshire. Even if your property doesn’t flood, valuable farmland often does – and it’s the same for key roads, particularly on the Welsh border around Melverley.

“It is astounding that Shropshire was not included in the recently announced Farming Recovery Fund, which only offers support to farmers in councils which operate under a framework that doesn’t understand sparsely populated rural areas.

“To me, it feels like we are being penalised for having the wrong sort of flooding.

“I’ve written to the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs to demand a change in Government policy and get our farmers the support they need. The current rules aren’t fair and we need action now to put them right.”

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