FLOODS LATEST: The aftermath

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Scottish Borders Council is continuing to support Borderers affected by floods following Storm Desmond.

Volunteer Centre Borders (VCB) is currently working with SBC to co-ordinate offers of help and support for flood victims, in terms of an initial response as well as the need for longer-term support.

Flooding at Coldstream

Flooding at Coldstream

Anyone who requires assistance, or knows of a neighbour or family member in need of help, can contact SBC on 0300 100 1800. An information page has also been set up at www.scotborders.gov.uk/stormdesmond.

Any individual or business who would like to offer support can contact VCB on enquiries@vcborders.org.uk or 0845 602 3921.

The organisation has also appealed for additional volunteers to help with the clean-up and recovery operations across all flood-affected areas of the region.

VCB Executive Officer Gordon Brown said: “As always at these times we see many people volunteering their time and services to provide much-needed support in our communities.

“We are urging people in all parts of the Borders to register their support with us both for the immediate situation in Hawick but also for future crisis, so when the worst does happen, we will be able to ensure the offers of help are used to maximum effect.”

Meanwhile, Business Gateway Scottish Borders staff have visited businesses in the affected areas of Hawick and provided information on how to deal with flooding.

In addition, skips are being provided free of charge to businesses who need them.

Again, a leaflet providing more information for businesses is also available from the Council’s dedicated information page – www.scotborders.gov.uk/stormdesmond.

SBC has a Crisis Grant scheme for individuals and families to help, depending on their personal circumstances, or to meet expenses arising as a result of an emergency situation and avoid an immediate threat to health and safety, which includes flooding.

Crisis Grant claims cannot be made by businesses, however, the Council at its discretion can award Hardship Relief to businesses facing financial difficulties.

Residents and businesses can get more information from the SBC website or by contacting 0300 100 1800.

Forecast

There is a Yellow (Be Aware) weather warning for rain is valid from 6am on Wednesday until 3am on Thursday. This will bring with it two periods of prolonged rain, although the Met Office and SEPA do not believe this will cause any significant issues.

A Yellow (Be Aware) weather warning for wind has also been issued for midday on until midnight on Wednesday due to the forecast of gale force winds. This will mainly impact the eastern side of the Scottish Borders.

Rob Dickson, Gold commander for SBC’s multi-agency response, said: “While we are being advised that the weather tomorrow will not have any significant impact we are fully prepared and have restored sandbag stocks across the region.

“We would urge residents to keep themselves updated on what can be an ever-changing situation, particularly keeping an eye on the Met Office and SEPA websites.

“We will also continue to provide updates via the Council’s website and social media channels.”

In Westminster this morning, Chancellor George Osborne announced that around £40 million of support will be released through the new Community Recovery Scheme to help in the aftermath of Storm Desmond.