Fed-up people in Norwich street demand action after suffering floods seven times in two months
PUBLISHED: 08:48 22 July 2014
A Thorpe Hamlet community is demanding urgent help after their street flooded seven times in just two months.
After the torrential downpours over the weekend, forecasters are predicting this week will be much drier.
Jim Bacon, from UEA-based Weatherquest, said: “The rest of this week will be largely dry.
“There’s a risk of showers at the end of the week, mainly a risk for either very late Thursday or Friday onwards. It’s a small risk of showers, but most of the week will be fine.
“One of the things we will have is misty low cloud coming from the North Sea, some of the coast may be rather cloudy through the day. That’s the main feature in the first half of the week.”
He said temperatures throughout the week would be cooler than those at the weekend, but would still be in the mid twenties.
He added that the weather looked set to continue in a similar manner during the coming weekend.
Beatrice Road has become a notorious flood risk, resembling a river when the rain falls.
Sunday marked the seventh time since May that people living there faced fear and anxiety that their homes would fill with water again.
At its worst the water was 18 inches deep, swelling up to front doors and, for some ,flowing inside.
The fire service was called to incidents across the city as a deluge of heavy rain swept chaos to much of the Norwich area with flash floods hitting several parts.
The authorities have said that an investigation into the Beatrice Road area’s sewer network is due to take place, and people living in the area have said something needs to be done as soon as possible to fix the recurring problem.
Ina Bullen, 80, has lived on Beatrice Road for 52 years and said Sunday’s flood was the worst she had ever seen.
Dani Cameron, a 41-year-old mum of two, says she contacted Norwich City Council numerous times about the flood but feels marooned.
She said just this year she has seen the road flood on February 14, May 27, June 23 and 24, July 8, 13, 14 and 20.
“We feel frightened of rain along here,” she said. “But no one seems to be responsible for what is happening along our road.
“It’s been happening regularly for the last three years but no one can be bothered to come out. We feel like the council don’t care.”
About 10 people tried to sweep the water on Beatrice Road away – but one of the residents, who did not want to be named, has now written to his neighbours calling for them to team up and fight for action.
He said: “The flooding situation on Beatrice Road is now quite intolerable and is now causing distress, stress and anxiety to residents.
“Yesterday’s [Sunday] flooding was so bad that again it was necessary for the fire brigade to attend to pump flood water away... Admittedly, yesterday’s downpour was torrential but this sort of occurrence is not only happening then, but also during fairly moderate downpours.
“I understand that this situation is being investigated and a swift outcome is needed before an even more serious event occurs.”
He said in the letter that he had contacted Anglian Water and the Highways Team at Norwich City Council on Sunday, but with no success.
A spokesman for Norwich City Council said: “As the highways authority for the city, Norwich City Council has the responsibility of maintaining on-street gullies.
“In response to previous flooding on Beatrice Road, our highways engineers have investigated the surface water drainage system and this has shown the gullies to be clear.
“Anglian Water is responsible for the city’s sewerage system and has informed us that a camera investigation of the pipe network on the road will be carried out next week. It is hoped this will establish the cause of the problem.
“This case has also been reported to Norfolk County Council in its capacity as the lead local flood authority, which is collating information about issues across the area as a whole.
“Although we have a schedule to clean the gullies across the city, they can still become blocked. It’s important that any flooding thought to be caused by blocked gullies is reported to us for further investigation.”
Antony Innes, from Anglian Water, said: “We understand how devastating any form of flooding is and are aware of the recent problems on Beatrice Road, Norwich.
“Engineers will be carrying out a detailed CCTV survey of our sewer network in this area as a matter of priority in the next few days.
“Should this find any faults or any work which is required we will of course act swiftly to carry this out.
“We’re also working closely with Norwich City Council and Norfolk County Council – as the Lead Local Flood Authority – to understand and work collaboratively to address this problem in the long term.”
Residents can report issues online at www.norwich.gov.uk/tellusaboutit or by emailing details and, if possible, photos showing the extent of the flood to email@example.com. Alternatively, issues can be reported on the council’s main number, 0344 980 3333.
Has your neighbourhood been suffering from similar problems? Contact Rosa McMahon on 01603 772453 or email firstname.lastname@example.org