VILLAGERS who have been consistently hit by horrific floods are set to benefit from flood defences erected near their homes.
Scropton homeowners, whose houses are situated next to the River Dove, have suffered more than most when floods have hit the Uttoxeter area in recent years.
They have often forced the closure of the village’s through-road, which acts as a convenient short-cut linking south and west Derbyshire.
However, the Environment Agency has invested £8.7 million since September 2012 in 5km of flood defences along the Dove in villages including Scropton.
Existing defences along the village’s Foston Brook have been strengthened, while works to protect its railway embankment have been carried out.
Localised embankments in Scropton, Hatton and Egginton have also been extended and the work was completed on Friday.
Defra Minister Dan Rogerson said: “The new flood defences will protect more than 1,600 homes and businesses in the Lower Dove from the risk of flooding and build a stronger local economy by giving businesses the confidence to invest in the area.
“We have invested more than £6 million in the project, while local businesses and communities have shown the effectiveness of partnership working by getting behind the scheme and investing a further £2 million.
“This major investment is part of a £2.3 billion programme to tackle the risk of flooding and means that more money than ever is being spent to better protect communities like those in the Lower Dove.”
Hatton’s Nestle factory donated £1.65 million to help the scheme, which it claims has helped it create 400 additional jobs.
One in six homes in England and Wales are at risk of flooding.
Flood warnings are available online at www.environment-agency.gov.uk/floodmidlands or by calling Floodline on 0845 988 1188.