Cirencester battles against second spate of flooding misery

Wilts and Gloucestershire Standard: Sandbags in Spitalgate Lane in Cirencester Sandbags in Spitalgate Lane in Cirencester

CIRENCESTER has been left mopping up after torrential rain brought a second spate of flooding problems to the town in the same number of months.

People living in the Hereward Road area of the town could only hold their breath as excessive rainwater spilled out of manholes and made its way toward their homes.

Cirencester Town Council built a wall of sandbags around the properties in a desperate attempt to keep the water at bay.

Peter Hoyle, 70, of Hereward Road told the Standard how the threat of flooding has made him and his wife cancel their 18-day trip to India.

“Obviously we are disappointed but in times like this, you have to stay and look after your home,” he said.

Peter did say, however, that some of his neighbours hadn’t been so lucky and fell victim to the familiar sight of sewerage invading their back garden.

He commended the town council’s quick response to the situation and said that “compared to last year, they have really improved.”

Martin Conyers, CTC’s land management officer, said: “We were called out to deal with one incident of flooding at Hereward Road. We believe that, as a town council, we are now much better prepared for this situation than in the past.”

Hereward Road’s flooding was not an isolated incident with nearby Spitalgate Lane being closed to all traffic after being submerged underwater.

Tracy Gardner, manager of the Ashley House Nursing Home on Trafalgar Road, said that visitors had been told to stay away because “access was impossible, unless you have a canoe”.

“It will start becoming a real problem for the residents if it carries on much longer,” she said.

Staff at the nursing home had to seal off the complex’s ground floor toilets because of the rising water levels, meaning residents were forced to go upstairs to use the facilities.

Playtime for children at Powell’s Primary School was also disrupted after a lake appeared in the middle of the back playground.

Julie Richardson, school administrator, said: “We’ve had to let the pupil’s go out for their breaks at different times because there isn’t enough room for them all on the playground.

“It is a real nightmare for us. The water isn’t going anywhere and we’ve had this problem for weeks. There just isn’t anything we can do about it.”

The Environment Agency has said that residents in Cirencester should be prepared for further flooding as the bad weather continues.

A statement on its website read: “The River Churn is still high with water in the floodplain in the Cirencester area. River levels are generally stable but remain very sensitive to further rainfall.”

For further information, visit www.environment-agency.gov.uk.

Comments (1)

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1:24pm Thu 13 Feb 14

Geoff66 says...

Why don't we look seriously at developing a flood management / catchment area behind the Mitsubishi Motors (Colt Cars) site on the existing flood plain/ water meadows. They have done this in Cheltenham, and other towns, so perhaps we should be looking at using this field, to help save the town and local residents from having to constantly live with the threat of more flooding and heartache.

We also need to look at how we are using and maintaining our rivers, spillways, culverts and sluice gates, as we seem to have lost the skill and knowledge of how to uses these to full and best effect.
Why don't we look seriously at developing a flood management / catchment area behind the Mitsubishi Motors (Colt Cars) site on the existing flood plain/ water meadows. They have done this in Cheltenham, and other towns, so perhaps we should be looking at using this field, to help save the town and local residents from having to constantly live with the threat of more flooding and heartache. We also need to look at how we are using and maintaining our rivers, spillways, culverts and sluice gates, as we seem to have lost the skill and knowledge of how to uses these to full and best effect. Geoff66
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