Water firm tackling sewage problems

A water company is working on short and long-term fixes to help village residents whose homes are regularly flooded by sewage.

Anglian Water has been busy investigating the cause of a problem that has seen sewage back up through drains in both roads and homes in Little Bytham for years.

The problem was highlighted in January by Mervyn and Sue McFarland, of Creeton Road, after their Christmas holidays were spoiled by overflowing sewage.

And this week Anglian Water revealed the measures it is taking to resolve the issues.

Spokesman Antony Innes said there were two issues to tackle - flooding in the McFarlands’ home and in the wider Little Bytham catchment area.

He said: “We are going to be putting in additional flood prevention measures around Mr McFarland’s property.

“We are not sure what they are going to be but we are drawing up plans and we will be talking to him beforehand due to his background in engineering.”

Mr Innes said the issue in the area as a whole was infiltration - rainwater seeping into sewage pipes and putting strain on the network.

He added: “Sewage and rainwater is running into the gullies. They are more responsive to high rainfall.

“Because of all the rain we have had the groundwater is incredibly high.”

Mr Innes said infiltration was problem that could only be solved after heavy flooding, adding: “You can’t survey the sewers when they are full.

“There is a narrow window to do it. You need there to be infiltration but you need to be able to put a camera through the sewers.

“It is going to take a long time to understand this. We are having similar problems in Norfolk as well. This is not a unique problem but it is a unique challenge.”