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'It's never been this bad': Swamped villagers near Market Drayton demand permanent fix

By Rob Smith | Market Drayton | News | Published:

Fed-up parishioners say that Shropshire Council's failure to act has led to part of their hamlet flooding and becoming impassable 15 times in the last six months.

Oakley Road in Betton is impassable because of flooding. Picture: Julia Roberts

Residents of Betton, near Market Drayton, say the flooding caused by Storm Dennis over the weekend is the worst they have seen and that it could have been prevented if concerns raised back in August were properly acted on.

Betton resident, parish councillor Jon Nixon, said a collapsed drain has led to regular floods since last August, but that it has not been repaired.

Mr Nixon is a member of Norton-in-Hales Parish Council and said he has raised the issue with the county council.

"I’ve been here for three years, lived in the area all my life – it’s never been this bad," he said.

"The flood is preventing my family and I leaving the house and is also preventing my five-year-old daughter getting to school.

"Since August we’ve been stuck and prevented from leaving our home at least 12 times. The road has been pumped out 14 times now, however, if the road was fixed in the first place it would have cost the council less money.

"I have been speaking to the council since August, obviously I’m a parish councillor so know it’s been on the agenda with little action since August.

"The council have confirmed it’s a collapsed drain and it needs repairing but that’s where we are up to – no end date.’’

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Julia Roberts' family has lived in Betton for more than 40 years and said that Oakley Lane is a particularly bad spot for flooding because it collects run off from the nearby fields, saying it is endangering drivers and wildlife.

She said: "Sometimes over the years a pool of water would collect but never making the lane impassable.

"The flooding has been a serious problem since August 2019 and is getting worse every time we have heavy rainfall.

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"It is now flooding regularly and is dangerous for both vehicles and wildlife."

She said that Shropshire Council has drained Oakley Lane about 15 times since August.

"The council have been sending a contractor to drain the water but this is at great expense to the tax payer – the situation needs fixing permanently.

"I am extremely concerned that if nothing is done, the water will start to enter the premises and risk flooding the property."

Shropshire Council was approached for comment. A spokesman said that the highways department was leading on emergency situations and would respond as soon as possible.

Rob Smith

By Rob Smith
Reporter

Senior reporter for the Shropshire Star based at Ketley in Telford.

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