Croydon Council criticised as blocked drain leads to flooding in Norman Avenue, Sanderstead

Croydon Guardian: Croydon Council criticised as blocked drain leads to flooding in Norman Avenue, Sanderstead Croydon Council criticised as blocked drain leads to flooding in Norman Avenue, Sanderstead

A street was badly flooded after grass cuttings left uncollected for weeks by the council blocked drains.

Croydon Council gardeners cut the grass in Norman Avenue, Sanderstead, on September 12 and 13, but failed to clear up the cuttings.

In heavy rains last month the grass blocked drains in the road, meaning an ankle-deep pool of water covered the road.

Margaret Langley, who has lived in the street for 30 years, called Croydon Council after the water became close to kerb height, but was told to contact the waterboard.

Now she has slammed the council for contributing to the floods by failing to collect the cuttings.

She said: "The council put a little notice on the telegraph pole saying the grass was being cut. They came along and cut it all back, but they didn't have anything to collect it with, so they left it on the road.

"It rained heavily and it washed all the cuttings down the drains, clogging them which then flooded the road. I called the waterboard who said the drains needed clearing out which was the council's responsibility.

"The council said they would send someone round within two weeks, but nobody's been. It was quite badly flooded, you couldn't cross the road."

The water which in places was ankle deep, took about a day to clear once the rain had stopped.

Mrs Langley added: "When we first moved here they would come down sweep the road and clean the drains out every three months.

"At the election the Conservatives said they would do it every month, but I have seen nobody sweeping and then they wonder why we get flooded."

A council spokeswoman said: "We apologise for not responding immediately to the resident from Norman Avenue who contacted us.

"The heavy downpours have meant we have a huge number of requests to clear gullies in addition to the schedule that we have.

"Across the borough, gullies are scheduled to be cleared quarterly in areas known to have frequent flooding, otherwise they are cleared once a year, which is the case here. Cut grass should be falling back onto the verge, not into gullies.

"We shall look in to the cause of the flooding in Norman Avenue to prevent it recurring."

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