Why did the flood defence system fail us so badly?

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I UNDERSTAND that Thursday’s floods were an exception, but as we have supposedly prepared for such weather by the installation of a flood defence system, we in the far flung district of Benton, residents of Goathland Avenue, were under water for a third time.

Yes, we did have a fleeting visit from a local Labour councillor who lives just off the flooded area who once again was fortunate to escape the damage.

As usual there was an absence of both council officers or those in charge.

Previously we at least had a visit from the previous mayor.

After the second year of flooding and many meetings and discussions later it was announced that there was to be a multi-million pound flood defence system and that patience was called for from residents as we were asked to suffer the major disruption of large trench work, which also entailed the felling of many mature trees down the avenue, along with the blocking off of streets.

While I can not fault the company responsible for the earthworks, there was a problem when it come to making good the damage.

There was also a promise of replacing the felled tree, and consultation was to take place. This has never happened.

I recently contacted Coun Darke who said that it was still their intention, although it is months now since work was completed and we still await the trees.

But more important, why did the promised flood defence system not work?

Did the huge header tank fail to do its job, if so was the work a waste of time and money?

Perhaps it’s sour grapes that I look upon it as cynical, but I spent eight hours attempting to get home and saw first hand many homes under water and poor residents struggling to cope with the deluge.

I saw few members of the Environment Agency and less council operatives.

Although I have to thank Linda Arkley for having the afterthought to post to all residents in the flood area a letter and set of directions on how to cope with the after effects.

Thank you Linda, it is appreciated, but an explanation would be better on why the wonderful flood defence system never worked.

TERRY HARDING

Goathland Avenue

Longbenton