July 7, 2012 by  

It never fails to astonish us long it can take to resolve issues.

When John was first elected to Rochford District Council 12 years ago one of the first problems he encountered was the distressing flooding in Woodside Chase, Elmwood Avenue and Hawkwell Chase and he saw how much suffering was caused to the residents.  I believe the cause of the flood was a sudden heavy rainfall and a blocked culvert.  Whilst the culvert itself was, and is the responsibility of Anglian Water Authority the adjoining land where the water and debris enter the culvert is unregistered and no owner could be traced.  At the earlier request of the residents Rochford District Council installed a specially designed Grille to prevent the debris entering the culver pipe which runs under the road.  As far as John was aware this had resolved the issue as in the intervening years no complaints were received by him as Ward Councillor since the grille was installed.

However earlier this year in the initial period of inordinately heavy rain Councillor Christine Mason received a complaint from a resident whose property adjoined the culvert and grille that he and his wife had been up all night removing debris that the heavy downpour had swept downhill to prevent the grille being blocked and flooding occurring.

Christine arranged to accompany an officer on a site visit to see first hand and the difficulties that were being experienced. There was lengthy discussion over whose responsibility it was to maintain the grille as no land owner could be traced and a mutually acceptable way forward. 

It did take some time and plenty of e mails and phone calls to ascertain who was responsible but I think all involved agreed that is was unacceptable to expect our older residents to clamber down into the drainage channel to remove debris. 

After a few games of ping pong between the Rochford District Council, The Environment Agency and Anglian Water Authority,  involving our MP at the request of residents, Anglian Water  finally accepted responsibility for maintaining the grille that protects their culvert and the locks were changed so that only they have access. 

If you do see a problem on this site please report it to Anglian Water authority on 08457 145 145.


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