NEWLY-appointed Environment Secretary Liz Truss is to visit Somerset to check the progress of a massive dredging programme designed to reduce flooding problems on the Levels.

She has accepted an invitation from Bridgwater MP Ian Liddell-Grainger, who says it is ‘absolutely vital’ that there is a continuation of ministerial oversight of the Environment Agency operation.

He added: “Local people will want to be assured this issue has not been allowed to slip down the government agenda.

“Liz Truss is well aware of the problems we have had down here and how close we have come to losing large expanses of farmland for good - and is keen to see what solutions are being applied.

“We shall be working out a programme which will enable her to meet the farmers who suffered so much devastation but who are now putting in such tremendous efforts to get their land back into good heart.”

A date for the visit is hoped to be confirmed by the end of this week.