Swindon Advertiser today reported that:
AFTER thousands of phone calls, hundreds of letters and 14 floods, Linda Brown and her neighbours can now be all but assured their homes will never be deluged with waste water again.
Their quiet confidence comes after Thames Water’s announcement that the £10m flood alleviation works which began in earnest in April 2009 is now officially complete.
The two-year project has expanded sewers at Haydon Wick so they can handle heavy rain directly protecting 75 homes and improve drainage for hundreds more.
It comes months almost four years after the first flood struck in July 2006.
But most will remember the flooding of July 2007 when the ‘big one’ hit, devastating countless homes throughout Haydon Wick and Covingham.
According to Linda it was that flood which prompted residents to action, and soon after a letter writing campaign was under way.
She said: “When you are fighting to get things done against a big company it is usually all about divide and conquer on their side.
“That was hard with us because we were showing each other our correspondence and they knew that.
“We had to get ourselves working together.
“Residents worked quickly to establish a campaign group and I decided to become a parish councillor to represent the people of this community.
“There have been a few hiccups along the way but here we are four years later with the job done, so we must have done something right.
“Now we just have to convince Swindon Council to clean the storm drains and the Environment Agency to dredge the river banks.”
Some of the work undertaken by the company includes 2.1 miles of new pipes, a new sewage pumping station in Deben Crescent and 60 new manholes.
Bob Collington, Thames Water’s director of operational management, said: “Protecting customers from the misery of sewer flooding is a top priority for us. No-one should have to put up with this truly horrible experience.
“I’ve met many of the residents in Haydon Wick whose lives have been disrupted, and I’m really pleased they’ll no longer be living in fear every time there’s heavy rain.”
Councillors Rex Barnett, Ian Dobie and David Renard issued a statement saying: “We would like to express our appreciation to Thames Water for the excellent work they have done to help alleviate flood problems in Haydon Wick.
“We have been working with them and other partners continuously for five years to identify the problems, work up a scheme that residents have approved of and then to deliver it with as little disruption as possible.”
Michael Wills, MP for North Swindon, said he was happy to see a result for both his constituents and the company.
The scheme involved:
- Laying 2.1 miles of new pipes;
- Building a new sewer under part of Blunsdon Road and Lady Lane;
- Building larger pipes under Blunsdon Road, High Street, Thames Avenue, Deben Crescent, Calder Close, Orwell Close, Severn Avenue and King George Playing Field;
Re-surfacing High Street, Green Valley Avenue and Blunsdon Road.
The original article is available here.