More flooding leads to new road closure

C130188-1 Bog Wandleys  phot kate'' Wandleys road closed.Photograph by Kate Shemilt'C130188-1
C130188-1 Bog Wandleys phot kate'' Wandleys road closed.Photograph by Kate Shemilt'C130188-1

SATURATED ground conditions have caused an Eastergate road to be shut most of this year.

The continued wet weather has seen water pour out of a borehole near Wandleys Lane and flood the road.

Residents have endured lengthy detours just to go about their daily lives.

One of them, Christine Holmes, said: “I’m having to drive three-and-a-half miles extra each way every day to get our 15-year-old daughter to school in Barnham.

“The only other option is to walk along the A29 but anyone who does that gets soaked from all the spray from the passing vehicles. It’s a nuisance and it’s frustrating we have to drive so far out of our way.

“But the situation is worse for people at the end of our road because their gardens are flooded.

“No-one’s house has been flooded yet, as far as I am aware, but it must be beyond description to have your garden flooded day after day.

“I think the water has been about 18ins deep at its worst. We’ve lived here nearly nine years and we’ve never had this sort of problem before.”

The flooding of Wandleys Lane began around December 28 and was initially occasional before the road was closed for about three-and-a-half weeks.

It had dried enough to be re-opened for some ten days, before excess water again flowed across it.

This led to the current closure. The road had dried briefly but the rain which began last weekend meant the return of the flooding.

The problem stems from the record rainfall of the past year. This has caused the borehole to overflow.

Portsmouth Water had been pumping the excess water away 24 hours a day to its Slindon reservoir, even though it did not need the water. But the water supplier was forced to stop when the water began to fail the standard needed for drinking supplies.

This means the water flows on to Wandleys Lane and is unable to get away.

“What needs to be done is to find out why the water is not draining away,” said Mrs Holmes. “Some county council workmen were here clearing the ditch alongside the road but it did not make a difference.”