Page last updated at 19:01 GMT, Wednesday, 7 May 2008 20:01 UK

Plans to evacuate flood-hit town

Flooded street generic
The committee of MPs warned Britain was still not prepared

Inhabitants of a Worcestershire town could be evacuated if there is a repeat of last summer's flooding.

The county council has unveiled plans to move 3,000 people in Upton upon Severn saying they need to be ready for a "worst case scenario".

Worcestershire County Council emergency planning manager Nick Riding said the work was because the town "effectively became an island" last year.

MPs have warned Britain's flood preparations are in a "chaotic state".

Flood defences

The Environment, Food and Rural Affairs committee warned the UK was still not prepared for the sort of flooding which hit much of the country last summer.

Herefordshire and Worcestershire were some of the areas worst affected by the flooding in July.

Mr Riding said they were looking at ways of being "able to respond should the need be to evacuate the area".

Meanwhile, the government is planning on spending 800m on flood defences by 2010 but the committee said it estimated at least 1bn would be needed.

The committee's chairman, Michael Jack, said councils across the UK also had to take more responsibility themselves to ensure drains were kept clear to prevent flood water building up.

Mary Dhonau, co-ordinator of the National Flood Forum which is based in Bewdley, Worcestershire, said the government also needed to increase its funding for flood defences.

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