Worried residents in call for drain action

PUBLISHED: 08:36 12 January 2013 | UPDATED: 17:29 14 January 2013

Dolberrow residents Dr Richard Lawson, Dawn and Colin Organ and Gaynor Dark with Olly and Ruby.

Dolberrow residents Dr Richard Lawson, Dawn and Colin Organ and Gaynor Dark with Olly and Ruby.


MEMBERS of a neighbourhood community group are calling on North Somerset Council to improve drainage after they were flooded five times last year.

A dozen people living in Dolberrow, Churchill, are asking for drains to be cleaned more regularly after their road was turned into a river multiple times at the end of 2012.

Resident Dr Richard Lawson said drains could not cope with the unprecedented level of rain as the road was flooded regularly in November and December.

He said: “We fully understand the river valley that we have the privilege to live in is bound to flood occasionally, and that the council has recently been preoccupied with more serious flooding.

“But the long history of silting up of our culverts and the fact that we cannot establish a sensible regular clearing regime, leaves us no choice but to bring pressure on the council.

“In the last year we have had a river down the bottom (of Dolberrow) four or five times, meaning we couldn’t drive our cars across it and this occurrence is really on an upward trend.

“In the scheme of things I accept houses aren’t getting flooded yet, so we can hardly jump up and down and scream, but it is a problem which is getting worse.

“It is inconvenient and causes a certain amount of damage.”

Dr Lawson’s car has been damaged by floodwater and believes the council needs to ensure rural drains are unblocked across the region.

He said previous discussions with the council had proved fruitless due to the authority’s budget cuts.

Dr Lawson added: “If you cut budgets, then you are vulnerable if nature takes over. We are not antagonistic to the council but we just want these drains cleared.”

Aleana Baird, clerk of Churchill Parish Council, said the Dolberrow situation was mirrored across the village.

She said the parish council is also trying to help residents of Bath Road, Stock Lane and New Road with long-term flooding issues, while a similar group has been set up in Langford.

Churchill was one of the worst affected areas at the end of November with the busy Dinghurst Road (A368) and Bristol Road (A38) junction almost fully submerged by floodwater.

The parish council has been in contact with North Somerset regularly concerning flooding and another meeting is planned between the two bodies and residents in early February.

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