FLOOD FEATURE PART ONE: Work on making homes more flood resilient for the future

Flood victims Geoff and Maureen Snade in their refurbished home.
Flood victims Geoff and Maureen Snade in their refurbished home.

Work is progressing to ensure Boston homes old and new are more flood resilient in the event of another flood.

Following the devastation caused by the 2013 tidal surge, news homes in parts of the town now have flood-resilient features built into them .

New terraces being built in flood-hit Argyle Street now feayure front doors raised considerable above ground level. These properties have been built above anticipated future flood levels and builders are now putting in the steps to each property.

A spokesman for the development of five houses and eight flats said the properties have insulated concrete ground floors above a foot-deep void. They are due to be ready for sale late summer.

Work has also been done to the homes of flood victims - to ensure their properties are better equipped in the event of another flood.

In Tawney Street, Boston, friends and neighbours Pam and Ted Jessop and Maureen and Geoff Snade are again enjoying their lovely 100-year-old homes after they were hit by the 2013 flood.

A spokesman for Boston Borough Council said: “The uncomplaining pensioners spent more than a year surviving in the upper floor of their homes after the ground floors were wrecked. Only now have the final finishing touches been made to restore their homes to their former pristine condition and equip them to deal with any future flood risk.”

Ted, 79, told how, despite a phoned warning, the flood waters came quickly and could not be resisted. The pressure of the water forced an outside door open and the flood poured through their home. Both couples salvaged a few items from their ground floors, but carpets and furniture were ruined in an instant.

Pam, 73, said: “We had a foot of water through the house. It all happened so quickly. It was coming up the stairs behind us. You don’t sleep when there’s flood water sloshing about your house. At 5.30am the next day you could just see the white lines reappearing in the road outside. We lived upstairs after the flood – it was like camping.”

Geoff, 82, said in the aftermath the borough council binmen were ‘absolutely brilliant” in helping to clean up.

“They came immediately and nothing was too much trouble for them. They helped drag out wet carpets and load them up to take them away. They took everything.”

Thankfully both couples had insurance cover and over the past 15 months their homes have been torn apart and put back together. Both couples also applied to the council for Government flood resilience grants to better protect their homes

Pam said: “You just have to get on with it.” Maureen added: “But I couldn’t go through it all again.”

With the Boston Barrier project now in the detailed design phase Tawney Street residents should not have to experience flooding again. The £95 million project is on target to be completed by the end of 2019, providing reduced risk from tidal flooding for 20,000 properties in Boston for the next 100 years.