IT SEEMS particularly ironic that the front page (Gazette, May 16, 'Look what we have to offer') was given over to making Kendal a better destination, promoting the beautiful, natural, river front lined with trees, when the previous week’s edition celebrated the planned flood defences that will remove them.

I was not flooded, but friends and neighbours were and I know that it is a horrible thing.

But the current plans are not the only solution, they are just one solution.

And as Dr Willshaw has described, they are a solution that will protect just one in ten of the houses that were flooded in Storm Desmond.

I think that we may well be being sold a pup; a vanity project that is highly visible but far from the most effective.

We need more deeply-thought, holistic solutions, ranging from up-stream land management to making individual homes either resistant to, or able to recover from, floods. And we need profound and fast action on the climate crisis.

And as the Kendal BID has said, solutions need to take account of the wider economic and cultural health of the town. We need to consider people, prosperity and planet together in these big decisions we have to make.

The world is beset by entrenched, divisive positions and short-term solutions right now. It would be great to be better than that as a town.

Mandy Barnett