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Charities on-hand as Christmas floods blight farmland once more

Food parcels delivered to those in financial difficulty, but charities still appealing for donations


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Areas of Cumbria have been flooded for the third time in a month
Areas of Cumbria have been flooded for the third time in a month

Farming charity Royal Agricultural Benevolent Institution (RABI) has sent out 800 food parcels to farming families in need this Christmas.

 

It is hoped the hampers, worth about £40,000, will bring those in financial difficulty some festive cheer.

 

It came as some homes and businesses in Cumbria flooded for the third time in a month.

 

You can donate to Forage Aid here

 

Worst affected areas include Appleby, Keswick, Kendal and Glenridding.

 

Defences in Appleby were breached when the River Eden burst its banks. The Environment Agency has 17 flood warnings and 42 flood alerts in place.

 

 

 

Charities have been working around the clock to help those in need.

 

Head of welfare for the charity, Trish Pickford said: “The knowledge that someone has remembered them at Christmas time, that they are not alone, and the excitement of unpacking the carefully chosen contents, lifts the spirits at a time of year that can otherwise be bleak. That is what we aim for in all that we do – in order to make a real difference to people’s lives.”

 

Last week, the Prince’s Countryside Fund announced £7,469 funding to a new collaborative initiative, the Cumbria Farm Flood Action Group.

 

It is continuing to as ask for donations from the public.

 

 

 

This group will assess the nature and scale of damage to farms and diversified businesses.

 

Learning lessons from Somerset and previous Cumbria floods, it will collect data from all farm businesses affected to assess the scale and nature of the flooding and make help available to farmers.

 

Adam Day, managing director of The Farmer Network, said: “Cumbria has suffered floods before, but this year the scale of devastation on-farm is beyond that seen before, both due to the level of damage and its spread across the whole county.

 

“We are here to help individuals and businesses affected and want to reach out to everyone as quickly as possible.

 

“Data collection may be perceived as a cold and impersonal activity in situations of tragedy, but it is essential to inform the work to rebuild our farming businesses and rural communities.”


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Weather warning as wet Christmas likely

Weather warning as wet Christmas likely

Farmers Guardian's weather expert Dr Simon Keeling has warned farmers to be prepared for flooding over the festive break.

 

Dr Keeling said: "It looks set to be a wet Christmas across western parts of the country and unfortunately farms which were flooded in North West England during the rain earlier this month again seem to be in the firing line.

 

"Rain looks set to start again on Christmas Day across Wales, then spreading to North West England. With a moist, mild south west flow being set up the rain is set to not move far during Boxing day. 36-hours of rainfall and the possibility of more than 50 mm could add to existing flooding problems, and farmers are advised to prepare now.

 

"It will also be very wet in North West Wales, and perhaps through central Wales too. This could lead to flooding here, especially across the flood plains of the Severn.

 

"The rain should ease through Sunday allowing for a drier few days into the early part of next week."

 

To keep up to date with the weather forecast for your area visit www.farmersweather.co.uk.

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