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CONCERNED residents who were worried their houses would flood after a 10ft wall fell into a nearby brook were sent empty sandbags by Sedgemoor District Council.

The wall, in Guildhall Lane, Wedmore, crashed onto Paula Puddy’s car in May - taking out her property’s windowsills and sending piles of debris into the stream.

The wall belonged to a property owned by Sedgemoor District Council which is next to Paula’s home, which sits in a high risk flood area.

Paula phoned the authority to ask them to remove the debris because water was backing up and she was concerned about the flood risk.

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However, instead of sending sandbags to the homeowners the council sent them empty sacks to fill themselves and an invoice to cover the cost of the sand.

Paula, aged 37, said: “In July there was a severe flood warning in the area and there was still some of the wall in the brook, so we asked the council for help.

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“We were sent some sandbags to protect the house but they were empty and we were expected to fill them up ourselves.”

The council has said it is common practice to send out empty sandbags due to problems with storage.

A spokesman said: “It’s a question of logistics. If we’d filled them up we would have had to transport them and we don’t have masses of storage.”

Sedgemoor District Council also sent out a mini digger to move the debris, but the machine was not suitable to do the job.

Paula and her neighbours were concerned that the stream was still blocked so her partner, builder Neil Tucker, managed to remove most of the wall with the help of some friends.

Paula said: “We would just like the wall built up and the damage paid for.”

Sedgemoor has offered Paula £3,000 to pay for work needed on the house, but she has not yet accepted

the sum as she says it does not come close to covering the cost of the damage which has been done.

A council spokesman said: “We’ve been carrying out checks to make sure nothing else has fallen into the brook that would raise the water level higher because there is potential for flooding if there’s heavy rain. We are hoping to start the repair work to the wall by the end of the month. It should take a couple of weeks.”

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