FLOODING: Public already paid for water system

Although I come from Whitburn, I read with interest that work is to start shortly in Cullercoats on flood prevention schemes.

My interest is that Whitley Bay (Briardene) and Whitburn are sister storm water pumping stations, built at the same time, and were built only to handle extreme rainfall.

I enclose a letter from Northumbrian Water. I quote: “Both Gordon and myself have always used the terminology of storm water to describe the liquid when talking with yourself and others. This reflects the fact that it is generated only during storm conditions. Its presence in the tunnel only occurs when excess rainwater, particularly from roads, enters the combined sewerage system.”

As it appears that the scheme will cost £2.5m and will see rainwater diverted away from Cullercoats and out to the North Sea, my concern is that, like Whitburn, this is the very function that the Whitley Bay (Briardene) system was designed for and the people of Whitburn and Whitley Bay have already paid for the system to take this so-called rainwater away.

Just like Whitburn, the design is seriously flawed and is full of foul sewage, not just rainwater.

In 2012 the European Court of Justice found that the UK was in breach of the Urban Waste Water Treatment Directive, and Whitburn has still not been rectified.

So I say to all the people in Cullercoats before, as is being suggested, the additional road gullies will be installed and paid for by the council (your money), I would find out where these road gullies are being connected to before they spend your money again on a quick fix to get the water company out of a problem of its own making.

Brairdene was designed to spill five hours a year, can anyone tell me how many times it is discharging?

Bob Latimer

Whitburn