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City under seige cries 'Foul!'

PARTS of Chester are under siege from sewage.

PARTS of Chester are under siege from sewage.

And the city's new cabinet has called for action to deal with overloaded sewerage systems.

The problem has already forced one family into a hotel and then into temporary  accommodation as sewage flooded into their home.

City leaders want to see an urgent high-level meeting with Welsh Water, which is responsible for the sewerage system.

MPs and MEPs and water industry regulator OFWAT could also be brought into the picture at a later stage.

Lib Dem group leader and Upton Cllr David Evans and council leader Cllr John Price (Lab) slammed down an angry emergency motion at a recent city council meeting.

They said that recent flooding had resulted in foul sewage mixed with storm water being deposited over gardens, driveways and garages.

The two councillors believe the recurring problem is caused by 'inadequate and outdated sewerage systems'.

Town Hall environmental and health chiefs have produced a cabinet report on the extent and severity of the nuisance.

Cllr Colin Bain (Lib Dem) has also produced a dossier of complaints.

Residents have told him of disgusting filth flowing across lawns, gardens and paths.

A report to the cabinet lists complaints of flooding across the city from Saltney to Christleton.

Environmental health chief Mike Lee says the council, which was responsible for operating the sewers until last April, is also aware of flooding problems affecting Welsh Water sewers in Upton and other areas.

Flooding and unblocking is now dealt with by contractors PGS Atlantic Power.

Cabinet members have added their own problem areas to the list and cabinet leader Cllr Price has asked for occupiers who have problems to contact the council.

These include the Westminster Hotel in City Road where Cllr Bob Rudd (Lab) said: 'There have been six major floods this year and they are not getting answers from the people who are supposed to be responsible.'

An urgent meeting is to be called between environment portfolio holder Cllr Paul Roberts (Lib Dem), city council officials and top managers from Welsh Water to discuss the 'scale and serious nature of the recent problems'.

Particular problems in Upton Lane will also be raised where action to deal with the situation is already on the shelf.

The cabinet will then review progress before deciding if representations are necessary to OFWAT and Chester's MPs and MEPs.

Town Hall officials believe the recurring flooding 'represents a threat to the health and well being of residents and the environment.'


David Holmes
Chief News Reporter
David Norbury
Mike Fuller
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