RESIDENTS in Ponteland are invited to find out more about potential options for flood protection.

The Environment Agency is carrying out an appraisal of flood defences in Ponteland and are considering a number of options to continue to protect properties from flooding as well as bring environmental improvements.

Residents are invited to a drop-in event which takes place on Wednesday, January 23 at Ponteland Memorial Hall, Darras Road, NE20 9NX between 2.30pm and 6.30pm.

Ponteland has a history of flooding from the River Pont and currently the Environment Agency maintains a range of assets in the area, including flood walls, embankments and pumping stations.

It is currently reviewing the condition of those assets and working with partners to better understand flood risk in Ponteland and develop a flood alleviation scheme to better protect properties in the town into the future.

The scheme aims to:

• Improve understanding of main river and surface water flood risk in Ponteland, with an improved model to support the scheme as well as the flood warning and incident response.

• Reduce flood risk to homes and businesses in Ponteland, and reduce the impacts on roads and utility infrastructure.

• Seek opportunities to provide environmental benefits as a result of any scheme.

During this year the Environment Agency hopes to identify a preferred option for flood protection.

Vanessa Collins, Project Manager for the Environment Agency, said: "We are updating our flood modelling and investigating the existing flood defences in Ponteland to improve our understanding of flood risk and ensure the standard of protection can be maintained in the future.

"We understand just how devastating it is to be flooded - we know there is a history of flooding in Ponteland - and we are committed to ensuring residents are protected.

"We want to work closely with the community throughout this process and would encourage people to come along to find out more."