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Thursday, 24 December 2015 (3074057)
Flood misery for residents
by Holly Rummens

FORMBY councillors will meet with Sefton engineers in the New Year to discuss the recent floods in the town in a bid to reassure residents that the issues will be addressed.

Harington ward councillor Nina Killen says there is widespread concern over how drains failed to cope with the many centimetres of rain that fell over the Christmas weekend.

Park Close, close to the new Bellway development at the old Powerhouse site, and parts of Church Road were submerged by rainwater which had nowhere to flow.

Meanwhile, Balmoral Drive in Southport was one of the worst affected and was closed off throughout boxing day, while the water was drained.

Preston New Road, Merepark Drive and Glenpark Drive were also badly affected.

Cllr Killen said: “No one wants to see their road flood and people are obviously concerned about what might happen in an even worse storm.

”We must protect people and property and that is what Sefton’s flood strategy sets out to do.

“Unfortunately climate change seems to be bringing with it so much more of this unsettled weather and heavy rain and we understand residents’ concerns that further development may increase the risk.

”We will be meeting with Sefton’s senior engineers to discuss what is being done to address this issue, to make drains flow better and how new developments can actually improve the flooding issue as opposed to making it worse.“

Sefton Council recently undertook a flood strategy consultation with residents and Cllr Killen says she is pleased to see the council working closely with residents.

Cllr Killen said: ”We are making sure the council is on top of this. Others may like residents to think that flooding is only caused or made worse by recent development and are using this as a reason why Formby should have no further new homes, but we will be pushing for any new development to improve the drainage and flood situation for current residents as well as for the new homes.

“No development should get the go-ahead until it has been shown that the drainage and flood risk will be improved.”

Formby Parish Councillor Jan Roberts added: “Liverpool Road and Alt Road in Formby is low lying and there are proposed plans to build 300 plus homes on that site.

”Following the recent storms, these fields are now acting as flood plains, and if they are built on, the water collating on these fields must go somewhere.

“After 24 hours of rain, the front drives, gardens and main roads surrounding these fields were flooded, and if these fields weren't there, I dread to think where the water level would be.”

Firefighters from Merseyside Fire & Rescue Service were called in to assist people trapped by floods across Northern England. Crews were sent to help rescue people trapped by the floodwaters, in Lancashire, Cumbria, West and North Yorkshire and York, assessing the areas affected and deploying High Volume Pumps in flooded areas.


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