John Stevenson (Carlisle) (Con): Carlisle and Cumbria have experienced a traumatic few days, with the devastating floods. It was good that the Prime Minister saw at first hand the tremendous work of the emergency services, the issues relating to the flood defences and of course
the direct impact of those floods on local families. As part of the recovery, Cumbria Community Foundation, a highly respected, county-wide charitable organisation, has launched a flood appeal. I wrote to the Prime Minister asking for the Government’s support for the appeal, as it would help many affected people right across the county. Would the Chancellor be able to offer such support from the Government towards this much-needed fund?
Mr Osborne: First, everyone here would pay tribute to the people of Carlisle, the extraordinary resilience they have shown and the acts of friendship that neighbours have shown to those affected by the terrible floods. Before the Prime Minister left for central Europe this morning, he asked me to make sure we would be able to help on the specific point my hon. Friend raises, and did raise with the Prime Minister, and I can say that we will support the work the Cumbria Community Foundation does and we will match, by up to £1 million, the money it is raising for its local flood appeal.