NE Scotland, Orkney & Shetland

Scotland floods: Emergency funds system activated

High Street, Stonehaven
Image caption On the High Street in Stonehaven, flood water is believed to have been contaminated by raw sewage

Emergency funds are being opened up to areas in the north east of Scotland hit by flooding and severe weather.

The Scottish government said it would consider claims under the Bellwin Scheme after heavy rains saw flooding deluge Stonehaven in Aberdeenshire.

Ministers have already opened the scheme to claims after gales battered coastal towns in Aberdeenshire and Moray earlier this month.

Highland Council is also seeking Scottish government emergency funding.

The government said ministers would consider emergency financial assistance for Aberdeenshire Council to help deal with the costs of flood damage in recent days.

Finance Secretary John Swinney added: "Communities across Scotland, but particularly in the north east, have had to endure exceptional weather in recent days.

"After the storms that battered coastlines earlier in December has come flood damage, most severely in Stonehaven.

"My thoughts are with the households and businesses that have suffered flood damage, at the cruellest possible time so close to Christmas.

"Clean up work is ongoing, and I commend everyone involved for their hard work."

Residents were evacuated from Stonehaven after it was hit by flooding on Sunday when the River Carron burst its banks.

Members of the public donated gifts for those who have lost their homes.

Michael Innes, chairman of the local community council, said: "A big thank you to all who donated at Stonehaven Town Hall on Christmas Eve, to help the flooding victims in our town. The response was fantastic and overwhelming."

He said the town hall was opening from 11:00 on Boxing Day, to allow residents to pick up any items they need.

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