RESIDENTS fear their homes near York’s River Ouse are at greater risk of flooding after defences were boosted elsewhere but deemed not to be cost-effective for their neighbourhood.

Householders in Holly Terrace and Alma Terrace say properties came within centimetres of being inundated during the Boxing Day floods of 2015, which followed weeks of heavy rain in the Ouse’s catchment.

Now they say any repeat of the Boxing Day conditions could lead to floodwaters over-topping doorsteps into houses in Holly Terrace and causing worse flooding for lower houses in Alma Terrace, because of the £19 million upgrade of the Foss Barrier Pumping Station.

They said the Environment Agency had admitted that extra water which could now be pumped into the river from the River Foss could in extreme circumstances raise Ouse levels by 8cms.

Spokesman Ron Burnett claimed residents were frustrated by "misinformation and delays" from the agency.

He said that at a meeting with the agency in May last year, there was a long discussion about the erection of a flood wall stretching from Lastingham Terrace to riverside steps at Ambrose Street but this was later discounted as "non cost -effective".

He said residents had been offered funding to help them protect their homes individually but with a cap of £7,500 per household, which might or might not be sufficient in all cases.

He claimed that in no other area was there a cost cap per property and residents would have to install flood doors, barriers and water pumps, which they would have to store, maintain and, in time, replace.

“Further work will be required to raise our electric points indoors and to have tanking and airbrick covers outside,” he said.

“We have been heartened by renewed discussions with the EA and new contractors Flood Technologies, but we’re still not achieving equivalent treatment to the rest of the city.”

An agency spokesman said that building a flood wall along the length of New Walk would cost in the region of £7.5 million and have a significant visual impact on historic listed structures.

He said the work would better protect only 18 homes and wouldn’t meet UK Treasury rules.

“We have offered each homeowner £7,500 to protect their property from flooding, for example by installing flood doors and barriers, and providing pumps,” he said.

“We’re working hard to reduce flood risk to all homes in York and need to ensure that public money is invested where it will make the most difference.”