Rallying call for flooding measures

A RALLYING call to crack on with a £1.7m pipeline upgrade to prevent regular flooding in a Broadland village is due to be made at a public meeting on Monday.

A RALLYING call to crack on with a £1.7m pipeline upgrade to prevent regular flooding in a Broadland village is due to be made at a public meeting on Monday.

Geoff Freeman, chairman of Ormesby with Scratby Parish Council, said “sensible but urgent” debate was needed over delays to the scheme which he tagged “a terrible

disgrace.”

He added it was “like living in the third world” for people in the Decoy Road, Watermeadow Close and Chimney Springs areas of Ormesby who regularly suffered flooding which in turn polluted dykes feeding in to the wildlife-rich Broad.


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He said people were hopeful of achieving a long-awaited scheme this month after tackling Anglian Water and other agencies in a saga that stretched back 25 years.

A spokesman for Anglian Water said: “We have been invited to talk about our proposals. They are still proposals because we have got to talk to planners and our own Anglian Water directors. All the boxes should be ticked by the end of September and we want to start it in October. On paper it's all there.”

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The scheme involves a new pumping station and main to take flows from Martham, Hemsby and Scratby which at present go through Ormesby on their way to Caister for treatment.

But Mr Freeman said the situation was frustrating with a complex web of departments and agencies to liaise with.

Engineer Paul Reynolds, who has lived in Chimney Springs for nine years, said effluent regularly bubbled up from manholes spreading to his property. Whenever flooding occurred AW came out to clear up but Mr Reynolds said: “That is not an action plan for a company of that size. The infrastructure is man enough but the pumping station creates a bottle neck.”

Monday's meeting at the Village Centre is being billed as an opportunity for locals to speak to AW representatives who will be asked why the pipeline has been delayed and the reasons behind the frequent breakdowns.

Mr Freeman said: “We have kept quiet because we know it devalues our properties but now we are saying let's get it out in the open.

“We have had 25 years of sewage overflows, then in August we finally hit the jackpot with the mother of all overflows at the pumping station in Decoy Road. It was the fourth time this year.

“We have been complaining and complaining and complaining and it has gone on for 25 years. The people in that part of the village are fed up to the back teeth with it.”

Mr Freeman hopes the meeting will trigger a concerted effort to bring about belated results.

The public meeting is on Monday at 7.30pm at the Village Centre, Station Road.

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