ORGANISERS of a community event for flood action groups to take place next week say the meeting is ‘long overdue.’

Recent flooding across Greater Manchester and the North West has raised many critical questions about flood risk management, not least from communities that have been subjected to the consequences of floods such as in Radcliffe.

Now, a networking day has been arranged with the aim of bringing together communities and flood action groups from inside the River Irwell catchment area.

Across the region, the unprecedented rainfall brought by Storm Eva in December 2015 caused £11.5 million worth of damage to infrastructure.

Almost 700 homes in the Radcliffe and Redvales area were affected the region suffered its worst flooding for 79 years.

Speakers at the event will include flood group members and key policy makers with a view to sharing best practice and to discuss community strategies to deal with future flood risk.

Dr Paul O’Hare from Manchester University, who will be speaking at the event, says that the upcoming networking day, the first of its kind in the region, has been a long time coming.

He said: “We need flood risk management for the whole of the River Irwell catchment area so this meeting is an important step to begin essential dialogue between the different groups.

“Something like this is long overdue and comes at a very important time because we are now at a point where we are discussing what is going to be happening in Radcliffe with flood defences and flood risk management.”

“Speakers include representatives from the Environment Agency, local authorities and leaders of flood action groups from across the Irwell catchment and beyond.

“We’ll be sharing best practice, discussing practical strategies to deal with future floods, and asking what more needs to be done.

Heather Shepherds, from the National Flood Forum, who will also be attending, said: “We are looking forward to the event as we are very community based and it is do good to have an event that has been set up by the community forum.”

Issues about contemporary flood risk management, not least from communities subjected to the consequences of the floods, have been increasingly raised in recent months.

Dr O’Hare added: “We haven’t done anything like this before in the area so hopefully we will see a full house and if it is a success we can continue into the future.”

The community action event will take place at Manchester Metropolitan University on Saturday, August 19 from 10am to 5pm with everyone welcome.

People can register their attendance for the event online at or for more information they can email Dr Paul O’Hare at