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Hull MP raises Kingswood flood risk worries in Commons

Hull North MP Diana Johnson today confronted Treasury Ministers with the contradiction between Government policy over flood insurance and their Help to Buy scheme.

This follows recent reports that Kingswood in Hull North is the country’s leading area for new homes sold under the Coalition’s Help to Buy scheme.

However, with 90% of Hull being a flood risk area and Ministers repeatedly stating that Government policy on flood insurance is to discourage new homes being built in flood risk areas, by excluding the homes built since 2009 from the new Flood Re scheme, Diana Johnson MP has been pressing Ministers over the apparent contradiction in Government policy.

Speaking in Treasury Questions, Hull North MP Diana Johnson told the House of Commons: “The Minister will note that Hull North’s area Kingswood leads the table in terms of houses sold under the Help to Buy scheme.

“But is the Minister aware that repeatedly DEFRA Ministers have told me in this House that those houses in Kingswood should not have been built because they’re on a flood plain and they will not get insurance under the Government’s new insurance scheme?

“So, does one hand of Government know what the other hand of Government is doing, because it doesn’t look like it to me?”

Speaking after the debate, Diana Johnson MP said: “In general, promoting house-building and home ownership in regions outside London and the south east, such as Hull, makes economic sense.

“However, in flood risk areas such as Hull - areas that can be defended from flooding with adequate investment - the Government does need to ensure that flood defence work is at the level needed and that home-buyers can have confidence in getting affordable flood insurance.

“With cuts in flood defence investment since 2010 and the Coalition’s Flood Re scheme coming in 2015 that excludes new homes built since 2009, there is serious uncertainty on both of these points. Until this contradiction in Government policy is faced, Ministers could be storing up serious problems for the future in places such as Kingswood.”

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