MORE than 100 people attended a special flood advice session at Christchurch council on Thursday.

Along with representatives from the Environment Agency, council staff welcomed residents to the drop-in session, providing advice and guidance on flooding issues.

The event comes after severe storms and extreme tidal surges wreaked havoc on the local coastline, with the Valentine’s Day storm destroying beach huts at Avon Beach and Friars Cliff.

Officers were on hand to provide advice and guidance on flooding issues and also make people aware of the government grants available if their properties were flooded, and government loans for preventative measures.

Cllr Margaret Phipps, portfolio holder for the environment at Christchurch council, said: “This has been an extremely well-attended event which goes to show how important it is for local people to get advice on what they can do to keep their properties safe in the event of further extreme weather.

“The event has attracted residents from across the borough, who have been able to benefit from a wide variety of prevention advice from the Environment Agency and advice on how to apply for grants from our own officers.”

Nick Reed, flood resilience officer at the Environment Agency, added: “It’s been good to work in partnership with Christchurch council on this event.

“The feedback has been positive and most people have gone away having had their questions answered.

“We’ve also been able to gather data on where flooding has occurred which will enable us to better manage the flood risk in Christchurch in future.”

Resident Alastair Hoare said: “This has been a really helpful event.

“The Environment Agency officers have been very knowledgeable about where we live and have been able to give us very targeted advice on how to build in flood resilience at our property.”