Hardship money still available for Elmbridge flood victims

Vandals: Pitches underwater

Vandals: Pitches underwater

First published in This Is Local London: Photograph of the Author by , Chief reporter - Richmond and Twickenham

Victims of this year’s flooding can continue to apply for funds from Elmbridge Council to help with damage caused by the bad weather.

The hardship fund, set up by the council earlier this year, is available to businesses, community organisations and residents across the borough and compensates for uninsured loss as well as covering other costs caused by the severe weather.

Many people and organisations were hit by severe flooding, including Weybridge Vandals, which suffered extreme damage to their grounds at Desborough Island near Walton Bridge.

The amateur sports club’s rugby and cricket pitches were submerged for much of January and February and, as the water receded, the ground was left with debris and much of the grass died off.

The damage meant to pitches had to be treated for contamination, vertically drained and reseeded to improve to condition so they could be played on once again.

John Sillwood, secretary of Weybridge Vandals, said: "The storms and floods this winter were the worst in living memory. While we had insurance cover for the clubhouse, the grounds are not easy to insure.

"We were very grateful for the timely help from the council’s hardship fund which gave us some cash to start the ball rolling."

The club also received emergency funding from Sport England and the English Cricket Board.

Councillor John O’Reilly, leader of the council, said: "We have money given to us by Government and have set aside our own money to help residents and businesses deal with uninsured losses from the floods in this difficult time.

"We would encourage anyone that has suffered a loss like this to apply to the hardship fund."

To apply for the fund, visit elmbridge.gov.uk/environment/flooding.

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