West Worcestershire MP Harriett Baldwin has called on the Environment Agency to explore all options to ensure that the Tenbury Flood Defence Scheme is able to move forward after it was confirmed that there is a multi-million budget shortfall.
The scheme was given the go-ahead in 2020 after securing £4.9 million of Government funding but rising costs have meant that the scheme is at least £2.3 million over-budget.
Harriett was briefed on the budget issues last week and met with representatives from the Environment Agency, Worcestershire County Council and Malvern Hills District Council to identify ways to fill the funding gap.
But the MP has also urged the Environment Agency to look at ways to reduce the costs of the scheme to ensure that the project is able to move forward.
“The Tenbury scheme was always going to be complex and having been involved in some of the discussions, it is clear that it has been difficult to strike a balance that keeps everyone happy as well as protecting the town from future flooding.
“This has also been exacerbated by the dramatic increase in the cost of building materials meaning that the current budget is way over the original projections for Tenbury’s scheme.
“I gathered all the key players together to try and identify ways to bridge the funding gap and also to look to reduce costs to make sure that it offers best value for money for the taxpayer.
“We all remain committed to delivering this important scheme and I’ve asked everyone to come back to the table in a month to share ideas about moving the scheme forward as swiftly as possible.”