Accident fears as downpour causes worst flooding in local memory

Nevill Green in Lewes was submerged in sewage water following the heavy downpour on Friday (August 10).
Nevill Green in Lewes after the downpour. Photograph by Sue MurrellNevill Green in Lewes after the downpour. Photograph by Sue Murrell
Nevill Green in Lewes after the downpour. Photograph by Sue Murrell

Residents said the flooding, a chronic problem locally, was the worst they’d seen it.

Passers-by had to wade through knee-deep water which covered the pavement on both sides.

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Traffic was delayed on Nevill Road, and one car had broken down by Prince Edward’s Road.

Sarah Neels, Joint Chair of Nevill Residents’ Association, said: “There is danger to life. It’s only a matter of time before an accident happens. There’s no regulation and no plan being put in place to stop this happening.”

She contacted Southern Water and East Sussex Highways to find out the cause of the floods, but is waiting to hear from them.

Sarah continued: “I’d never seen it like that before. As well as water coming onto the green from Nevill Road, there was water running onto it from the other side, down Middle Way. It was a two-pronged attack.”

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Resident Bev Taylor wrote on Facebook: “I moved to the Nevill in 1969 and Nevill Road used to flood back then. If it hasn’t been fixed by now it never will.”

Sarah believes that East Sussex Highways and Southern Water should have an open meeting involving the Nevill Residents Association, to resolve the issue.

She said: “This shouldn’t be down to individual residents. I shouldn’t be the one arranging meetings or pushing for attendance. I want it to be resolved and there needs to be a plan of action.”

A spokesperson for Southern Water, said: “We received a report of flooding at Nevill Road in Lewes on Friday, 10 August.

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“A surface water gully had got blocked and a sewer had been overloaded following heavy rainfall, which we promptly cleared and disinfected.

Flooding is a complex and emotive issue and one for which many agencies and organisations are responsible.

“We are committed to actively helping and supporting other organisations and the local flood resilience forums to address flood issues.

“This will enable all parties to properly understand the issues, as well as allowing us to look at the systems to investigate any opportunities for us to make our network more resilient, to help alleviate any future flood issues in the area.”