Greenpeace say 1,200 homes are at risk of flooding

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More than 1,000 new homes in Castleford could be at risk of flooding and potentially be uninsurable, Greenpeace has claimed.

The environmental charity has included a proposed development at the town’s former Hickson and Welch chemical plant and Nestle factory in a report which raises fears over flood risks.

The site has been classified as a Housing Zone under a government scheme to speed up housebuilding.

Developer Castleford Energy Village has said it hopes to build 1,200 homes there.

Greenpeace said Castleford was among nine Housing Zones which were at risk of flooding, and as a result might not qualify for a new government flood insurance scheme.

The charity’s report said: “This would leave homeowners reliant on commercial insurers who may choose not to insure homes built in flood zones, or do so at prohibitively expensive rates.”

Greenpeace also criticised the government for encouraging housebuilding in flood-risk areas while cutting the budget for flood protection.

Its UK chief scientist Dr Doug Parr said: “The current flood emergency isn’t even over yet, and the government is already storing up the next one.”

Wakefield Council said the site had been approved for potential housing by an independent planning inspector, but the number of homes was not yet decided.

Sarah Pearson, service director economic growth and housing, added: “These proposals would need to be brought forward by potential developers and would be subject to our usual planning procedures.

“We have currently received no planning applications.

“We are in the process of appointing flood experts to guide us in this work, which will then look at any measures that need to be taken if needed.”