South Lakes MP Tim Farron has welcomed the announcement this week that the government will continue to pay for the Lyth Valley pumps until 31st December 2020, an 18-month extension on their previous commitment. Tim has long campaigned for the government to fund these pumps, and has vowed to continue the fight to secure funding beyond that date.
The government had originally planned to stop funding the pumps last June, however following pressure from Tim including many exchanges with Ministers both via letter and in the House of Commons, the government then agreed to fund the pumps until June 2019. This has now been extended for a further 18 months, meaning that the government has committed to fund the Lyth Valley pumps, operated by the Environment Agency, until the end of December 2020.
Tim has welcomed this news, and has said he will continue to campaign for the government to commit to funding the pumps beyond 2020. The government's intention is still to stop funding the pumps after this date.
Tim said: "This is a massively important victory not just for the Lyth Valley, which will continue to be protected by these pumps, but also for our wider community, which the government had tried to slap with the bill for this vital work. I am pleased the government will fund the pumps until the end of 2020, and will continue to put pressure on them to continue beyond then.
"The pumps are of strategic importance to South Cumbria, helping to protect homes, businesses and vital transport infrastructure, and the government has a duty to fund them. The floods last winter were devastating for this area, but without the pumps it would have been even worse."
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