MORE than 5,000 homes in Bournemouth and Poole are at risk of flooding, according to Friends of the Earth.

The campaign group is calling for more investment in flood defences and more action to tackle climate change as it releases its latest analysis of Environment Agency data.

It claims 5,378 homes in the Bournemouth and Poole area at flood risk, including 1,469 that are judged to be at significant risk.

The recent flooding affected many communities in Dorset and along the south coast and nationally, over 6,000 homes were affected. However, the Friends of the Earth said the Environment Agency’s figures show a much larger number of properties in the UK could face flooding in the future.

Annette Brooke, MP for Mid Dorset and North Poole, said: “The recent floods are a wake-up call on the need to do more to protect households from climate change.

“Flood defence plans must take into account the expected impacts of climate change, like more rainfall and higer sea levels. Local authorities must look carefully at new planning applications and Government should look at current guidelines and building regulations. We also need a renewed focus on tackling climate change as well as preparing for it, focusing on clean energy instead of blindly pursuing fracking.”

Mike Birkin, a campaigner with Friends of the Earth South West, said: “Flooding is devastating for anyone that is affected by it and as a country we must do much more to prepare for the impacts of climate change.

“Without proper investment in flood defences, hundreds of thousands more homes could be put at risk of flooding.”