Hope for pair on Kirkham estate after home flooded twice

When heavy rainfall is forecast it always brings a feeling of dread to one couple from Kirkham - because their home has been flooded twice.

Friday, 5th November 2021, 8:24 am

Howard Lawrenson and partner Petrica Stefanescu, of Old Tarnrick Way on the Brookwood Park estate, saw water gush into their home in August last year, leading to severe flood damage, only for the same thing to happen again just two months later.

So they were alarmed early this week when a heavy deluge of rain resulted in a familiar scenario, as the A583 Blackpool Road adjacent to their home became flooded and moving traffic caused waves of water to crash down and overflow the pond feature close to their home,.

With the water reaching their garden, the couple and their immediate neighbours frantically called the Lancashire County Council, developer Story Homes and the police for help/

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Petrica Stefanescu with sandbags at the front of the hedge overlooking his home

Eventually police had to temporarily cordon off the A583 on Monday night to stop cars from causing the waves of water, as the homes are below the level of the main road.

Howard says the pond levels kept rising because the outlet flowing out to a nearby brook was blocked and they have been trying to get developer Story Homes to deal with the blockage since last year.

On Tuesday, a team from Story Homes visited the site and carried out essential repairs and drained the pond.

Howard, 45, a service adviser for Scania, said: "It has been a nightmare and we are just hoping the work done will finally have solved the issue of the pond flooding.

Flooding on the A583 at Kirkham

"As the pond fills, it is supposed to drain away through an outlet into Wrongway Brook. The responsibility of maintaining the pond is Story Homes.

"United Utilities told us the pond levels rise because the outlet flowing out to the Brook is blocked.

"As the pond is full, no water can enter it through the sewer from the highway. The pond then overflows with heavy rainfall onto the development and and that is why our home was flooded.

"The pond level is now considerably lower after the work carried out but the test will come when we next the next bout of heavy rain.

"It has taken too long to get this sorted out."

Howard said that when the house flooded last year, carpets, floor surfaces and skirting boards were ruined by the water, leading to two heavy insurance claims totalling thousand of pounds.

He said: " I no longer am able to obtain household insurance including flood cover. my premium for basic cover has increased six times. It has affected my general health and indeed my mental health."

Petrica, 29, a transport manager, said: "It has been really stressful for us and our neighbours.

"We have been living in fear every time it rains and have had to put sandbags out to try and stop the flooding.

They are now hoping the issue has been solved but are calling on Story Homes to continue to maintain the pond.

A spokesman for Story Homes said: "

A spokesperson from Story Homes said: “We would like to reassure our residents that their safety is extremely important to us. We are undertaking maintenance work to the existing pond to ensure it is operating as efficiently as possible. We regularly monitor the levels of water to minimise the risk of it overflowing and when required, during high rainfall events, we ensure that the water level is managed.

“We are working closely with United Utilities and Lancashire County Council to address the wider issue of flooding in the Kirkham area and to determine the root cause of the issue with water overflowing from the highway in close proximity to our customers.”