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Theresa Villiers 'grateful' to live on a hill amid flooding crisis

Published 14/01/2016

Theresa Villiers
Theresa Villiers

Conservative MP and Northern Ireland Secretary of State Theresa Villiers has said she is 'grateful' to live on top of the hill amid devastating flood waters which have wreaked havoc across the UK.

The politician posted a report on Facebook of her visit to Toomebridge to meet Rivers Agency officials.

Useful visit to Toomebridge today to see the sluice gates which control the water level from Lough Neagh. I was briefed...

Posted by Theresa Villiers for Chipping Barnet on Monday, 11 January 2016

She praised the government body's work undertaken to combat flooding around the shores of Lough Neagh.

She said she had "huge sympathy" for those who had homes and businesses flooded in recent weeks and welcomed the Executive's offer of assistance.

In response to one comment she added: "It's times like this that I am grateful that I live on top of a hill."

Some of the worst flooding in Northern Ireland over the festive period was witnessed around the shores of Lough Neagh and its tributaries leaving scores of homes and businesses swamped.

Lough Neagh reached a 30-year high during the worst of the weather, peaking at a metre above the normal winter level - about 200 millimetres above the last significant high in 2009.

Water levels in Upper Lough Erne also peaked at just less than a metre above normal winter level, but around 150 millimetres below the 2009 peak, with the biggest impact on roads rather than properties.

While in many parts of the UK, towns, cities and villages are still working to overcome devastating flood waters.

In some cases the military was drafted in to help support those communities blighted by the floods.

Soldiers from 2 LANCS rest for a few minutes awaiting the next task as the British Army assists the Environment Agency with the Christmas floods (Ministry of Defence/PA)
Soldiers from 2 LANCS rest for a few minutes awaiting the next task as the British Army assists the Environment Agency with the Christmas floods (Ministry of Defence/PA)
A Christmas wreath hangs on the door of a house on a flooded residential street next to the River Foss, after it burst it's banks in York, northern England, on December 28, 2015. British Prime Minister David Cameron visited the flood-hit historic city of York on Monday as cities, towns and villages across northern England battled to get back on their feet following devastating storms. Around 500 properties were flooded in York, one of Britain's top tourist attractions, on Sunday as two rivers burst their banks. Some residential streets became so inundated that cars were covered up to their roofs. AFP PHOTO / JUSTIN TALLISJUSTIN TALLIS/AFP/Getty Images
Furniture is seen piled high in the window of a house on a flooded residential street next to the River Foss, after it burst it's banks in York, northern England, on December 28, 2015. British Prime Minister David Cameron visited the flood-hit historic city of York on Monday as cities, towns and villages across northern England battled to get back on their feet following devastating storms. Around 500 properties were flooded in York, one of Britain's top tourist attractions, on Sunday as two rivers burst their banks. Some residential streets became so inundated that cars were covered up to their roofs. AFP PHOTO / JUSTIN TALLISJUSTIN TALLIS/AFP/Getty Images
A flooded residential street is pictured next to the River Foss after it burst it's banks in York, northern England, on December 28, 2015. British Prime Minister David Cameron visited the flood-hit historic city of York on Monday as cities, towns and villages across northern England battled to get back on their feet following devastating storms. Around 500 properties were flooded in York, one of Britain's top tourist attractions, on Sunday as two rivers burst their banks. Some residential streets became so inundated that cars were covered up to their roofs. AFP PHOTO / JUSTIN TALLISJUSTIN TALLIS/AFP/Getty Images
A submerged car is pictured on a residential road next to the River Foss after it burst it's banks in York, northern England, on December 28, 2015. British Prime Minister David Cameron visited the flood-hit historic city of York on Monday as cities, towns and villages across northern England battled to get back on their feet following devastating storms. Around 500 properties were flooded in York, one of Britain's top tourist attractions, on Sunday as two rivers burst their banks. Some residential streets became so inundated that cars were covered up to their roofs. AFP PHOTO / JUSTIN TALLISJUSTIN TALLIS/AFP/Getty Images
A man on a bicycle turns back from a flooded residential street next to the River Foss after it burst it's banks in York, northern England, on December 28, 2015. British Prime Minister David Cameron visited the flood-hit historic city of York on Monday as cities, towns and villages across northern England battled to get back on their feet following devastating storms. Around 500 properties were flooded in York, one of Britain's top tourist attractions, on Sunday as two rivers burst their banks. Some residential streets became so inundated that cars were covered up to their roofs. AFP PHOTO / JUSTIN TALLISJUSTIN TALLIS/AFP/Getty Images
Businesses continue the clean up in Hebden Bridge, West Yorkshire after the weekend's flooding.
People being rescued by soldiers and emergency services in York city centre
Flooded riverside properties in Kings Street, York, as swamped towns and cities continue to struggle against the Christmas floods.
Businesses continue the clean up in Hebden Bridge, West Yorkshire after the weekend's flooding.
The River Irwell
The Army assists the Environment Agency as swamped towns and cities continue to struggle against the Christmas floods (Ministry of Defence/PA)
Flood water by a bridge in Cawood, between York and Selby
Labour MP Simon Danczuk, whose Rochdale constituency has been hit by flooding, said money should be spent in the UK rather than overseas
Insurance companies say they are visiting areas hit by floods
A man wades through flood waters at Hebden Bridge, where flood sirens were sounded after torrential downpours
A flooded railway line at Kirkstall, Leeds
Sandbags are placed on top of the flood defences along the River Ouse in York city centre
Rescue teams in Whalley, Lancashire, after the area was hit by downpours
Soldiers helping to set up flood defences in Appleby as the Army was called in to help protect flood-hit areas of Cumbria (Ministry of Defence/PA)
The River Ouse in York, where riverside properties have been flooded again.

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