More than 7,000 businesses and homes across England will be better protected against floods this winter thanks to a multi-million pound funding boost from the government.

An additional sum of £40m is being shared out to 13 flood schemes across the country to better protect flood-hit areas and support regeneration.

It adds to millions of pounds of government grant-in-aid already allocated to these projects and partnership funding already secured.

Environment Minister Thérèse Coffey said: “This extra funding for flood defences will unlock schemes that will better protect thousands of homes and businesses against flooding, supporting regeneration in important towns and villages in the north and coastal communities.

“It will boost our resilience as a nation and help our communities to grow and prosper.”

Five flood schemes in the north of England will receive almost half of the total funding - £17.4m- in a boost to the Northern Powerhouse.

Large parts of England were hit by torrential rain and widespread flooding last autumn and winter with power blackouts across the north-west of England and north Wales and devastating flash floods in Cornwall.

Over the past three years, the Environment Agency has completed more than 400 new flood schemes.

Chief executive Sir James Bevan, said: “Across the country we are seeing more extreme weather, which makes the Environment Agency’s role to protect people, homes and businesses from flooding even more important.”