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Pickles vows to fight for Pagham sea defences
11:02am Sunday 23rd February 2014 in News
Communities Secretary Eric Pickles has vowed to lobby for more Government support for flood defences at Pagham beach after visiting the battered sea front on Thursday.
Mr Pickles was joined by Littlehampton and Bognor Regis MP Nick Gibb, along with other parish and district councillors as he saw first hand the damage sustained during the recent storms.
Pagham Beach was cordoned off last month as strong tides battered newly installed sea defences.
While no homes were damaged during the vicious weather much of the defences, which were completed in December, were simply washed out to sea.
Arun District Council has been working to protect properties from further risks while the Environment Agency is looking at a longer-term solution to the problem.
During the nearly 90 minute visit, Arun councillor Paul Dendle asked the Conservative MP to support a review of current flood funding schemes, lobby the Department for Communities and Local Government for an Environment Impact
Assessment and other studies to review the long-term needs of the Pagham community. He also urged Mr Pickles to support the district council’s claim for Government funding to pay for urgent repairs at the beach, which are thought to have cost about £150,000.
After the visit, Coun Dendle said Mr Pickles was “very receptive”.
He added: “We would welcome any assistance from the Government and its agencies that will benefit the communities we serve.”
After viewing the aftermath of the floods, Mr Pickles spoke to local residents at the Pagham Yacht Club and said he had “got the message” and would take the arguments he had heard to the Government.