When it rains it pours: cricket clubs affected by flooding and how it may affect your insurance
Our thoughts have been with cricket clubs in the North West and North East of the England as the rain has continued to pour down over the past eight weeks creating flooding and chaos everywhere.
Carlisle Cricket Club is barely visible the flood water is so high. A fridge freezer has been washed down stream too pic.twitter.com/Wej5Cx1IuW— Sarah Corker (@SarahCorkerNews) December 6, 2015
What we have noticed is a great response by the local communities and then central government in responding to this crisis.
County Cricket Boards have also set up funds to help local clubs – LCCB have raised £20,000 to help the clubs affected in Cumbria and Lancashire – and similar fund raising activities have been set up in Yorkshire by YCCC and according to their websites the clubs affected include Appleby CC, Carlisle CC, Cockermouth CC, Edenhall CC, Kendal CC, Keswick CC, Rockcliffe CC, Workington CC, Garstang CC, and Ramsbottom CC.
We caught up with specialist insurance broker Aston Scott who have been handling the claim for Keswick CC (pictures of the damage featured on BBC News).
Colin Mico of Aston Scott said: "I was impressed with Hiscox as insurers as they managed to get a loss adjuster out to the club within two days of the flood notification.
"The club is happy with the instructions that they received and were able to start the clean- up in their pavilion less than a week after the flood.
"It is somewhat ironic with Keswick CC that we discussed the flood risk at length with insurers, and following the increased flood protections in place along the River Greta insurers were happy to take the risk on.
"The rainfall was so immense that these flood defences were overwhelmed at the club was flooded, when it had avoided flooding during the last occasion in Keswick in 2009 that prompted the increased flood protections.
"We are obviously waiting to see if any of our other client clubs are affected now that the flooding has reached parts of North Yorkshire & County Durham.
"Unfortunately, the latest flood warning map on the BBC has a great many more areas at risk, so we may see other parts of the country affected if the low pressures keep swinging in from the Atlantic."
One of the interesting facts to come out of this is that a number of clubs whose grounds are in historical flood plains, have accepted their fate and built their pavilions with flood protections – Leatherhead CC has their original pavilion on a 1m plinth and their extension with similar depth; Tewkesbury CC, Colchester & East Essex CC and Shepperton CC are on stilts above the flood plain, and I am sure that there are others.
In the South, the floods of 2013 affected a number of clubs in Surrey and Kent, but actual losses were relatively low due to the flood protections taken for pavilions.
Both Leatherhead CC and East Molesey CC had outfields resembling boating lakes but their pavilions and contents were not affected.
Insurers are looking more carefully at flood risks around the country and having flood protections in place can be the difference between being able to get flood cover or not.
All insurers have flood modelling based on the Environment Agency maps, so there is no getting away from it.
Even if there has been no history of flooding at your club in the last 10 years, it is important that club officials still look at the Environment Agency maps to see how their location is categorised – if it is in a high flood risk zone, and then drainage ditches, flood defence walls and plinths can be considered.
The government continuously talk about improving flood defences and there are good examples of money being spent to protect major towns, but this may not be enough to save a club in the event of exceptionally heavy and prolonged spells of rain.
We saw that with Tonbridge CC in December 2013, when the flood defences at Leigh were overwhelmed after six weeks of constant rainfall.
It is certainly essential now, more than ever, for cricket and other sports clubs to be seeking expert advice about their club insurance cover.
For more information and expert advice on your club insurance needs please contact Colin Mico at Aston Scott on 020 8643 7575 or [email protected]
© Cricket World 2016