THE recent flooding in Oxford has caused huge problems to householders and to people trying to get around the city.

The record rainfall has swamped the land around so that it cannot hold any more water. Clearly we need to try to work out the best ways to reduce the risk of any repeat of this situation.

For some local residents the problem of flooding itself has been compounded by problems caused by sewers backing up, making an already dreadful situation even worse.

Our hearts go out to those directly affected.

Oxford Lib Dems want all possible measures to be implemented that would prevent homes being flooded and roads and rail lines being made unusable.

There is considerable evidence from this country and elsewhere, that planting trees and storing water upstream, reducing run-off, reduces the rate of flow and hence the risk of flooding down-river. We want to see the authorities look at this as a potential long-term solution to Oxford’s flooding.

We are pressing Government to fund the work at Sandford Lock as a matter of urgency to remove a pinch-point there.

The building of a new channel carrying water round the west of the city, at a cost of some £120m may also be part of the solution and if the evidence shows that it would work, we would support it.

However it would not deal with the root cause of the problem and we would have to be certain that it would not cause additional flooding further down-river.

If Labour and the Tories think it is a complete solution to Oxford’s flooding problems they are sadly misguided.

LAYLA MORAN, Lib Dem Parliamentary Candidate Oxford West and Abingdon
JEAN FOOKS, Leader of Lib Dem Group Oxford City Council
JIM CAMPBELL, Deputy Leader of Lib Dem Group, Oxford City Council