Flintshire farmer’s plea for action over sewage floods

Reporter:

Matt Jones

A FARMER plagued by floods containing raw sewage is pleading for action.

Martin Hughes has been forced to leave a field empty after a series of floods from Black Brook onto his farm located on Pool Lane, between Buckley and Padeswood.

A three-pronged solution has been called for with Welsh Water, Environment Agency Wales and Flintshire Council working to solve the problem.

Mr Hughes said an increase in houses in Buckley had left the drainage system unable to cope.

On Thursday the Leader reported that the Environment Agency had launched an investigation after dead fish were found in the brook.

About 20 fish were known to have died in what the agency described as a “pollution” spillage which environment bosses said was not related to Mr Hughes’ ongoing concerns.

Mr Hughes said: “It has been ongoing for a long time, but not in that concentration.
This is the worst it has been.

“When the storm valves are opened in Buckley the land can get covered in raw sewage. We have reported it and nothing has ever happened. You can’t graze cattle on the land. It is almost worthless.

“It has to be controlled. The storm valves need to be looked at. There needs to be larger settling tanks with more capacity. The trouble is Buckley has gone so big now. The whole system needs to be examined.”

The brook, which leads into the River Alyn, has not been cleared since 1979 and any extra water passing through backs up and quickly floods.

County councillor Raymond Hughes said: “My main concern is the pollution. I believe it is coming from the sewage works. They let it out every so often and it is not clean enough as far as I am concerned.

“That can’t be allowed to happen. I think Welsh Water, if it is Welsh Water, and the Environment Agency need to get together with the county if necessary and get something sorted. It is a health hazard.

“I don’t think the sewage is treated well enough to be let out. It should be good enough to be let out. This brook is linked to the water source.”

An Environment Agency spokesman confirmed nearby storm drains had permission to discharge treated waste water at certain times.

He said: “We are aware of the problems that the landowner has been having but this is not related to this investigation. We are, however, continuing to assist the landowner to help him find a solution to his concerns.”

A spokeswoman for Welsh Water said: “We have had no reports of complaints of waste water flooding in that area. If anyone does have any complaints they can contact Welsh Water on 0800 0853968.”

See full story in the Leader

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