Flood-hit home owners blame Biopark for damage
OWNERS of flood-damaged homes in Scorrier blame developers of the nearby Cornwall Biopark for the “river” of water, mud and rubble which destroyed a driveway, overflowed sceptic tanks and flooded the ground floor of one couple’s house.
A torrent of water was released from the 35-acre site after an earth mound, which acted as a dam, burst its banks during heavy rains last weekAugust 5.
Wendy Bowley was woken at 3am last Monday aug 5to find her house flooded by a foot of water and rubble.
“It is not only rubble but it was the volume of water coming from the site.
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“It was just a river coming down of this mud and rubbish. It was surreal.”
Reuben Long, who lives on Sawmills Lane, said his garage was flooded as a result of “neglect” by the developers.
He said: “Since they bulldozed the hedges and trees on the site there is nothing to hold the water.
“They built a dam to hold acres of water. It’s not enough to hold that amount of water from that acreage.
“It was neglect from people not knowing what they are doing.
“The dam burst its banks and away it came. And we are the ones who suffered. It was frightening.”
Russell Dodge, director of the developer and owner of the site, Hallenbeagle Estates, said the earth mound – or ‘bund’ – was put in place in accordance with planning regulations in advance of landscaping work.
“If the bund had not been there the water would have trickled off the site, or at least a lot slower than it did. As it was the water went down the lane in a torrent.”
He offered his sympathies to local residents, saying: “This incident was extremely unfortunate and I don’t think there was anything we could have done about it,” adding that measures were being taken to prevent this happening again.
Ms Bowley’s partner, John Varpenter, has since built a one-metre high wall to prevent future flooding, despite having a pacemaker fitted two weeks ago.
“He should not be doing it but he feels he has no other choice,” said Mrs Bowley.
The couple are currently living upstairs as the whole ground floor is ruined.
Councillor Mark Kaczmarek, for the Carharrack, Gwennap and St Day electoral division, met with Cormac area manager, Viv Bidgood, and residents on Sawmills Lane the day after the flood.
Mr Bibgood said in an email to the councillor that the road would be resurfaced and the homeowner’s driveway would be repaired.
But he said: “In terms of the remainder of the residents affected and those flooded, I need to establish where liability lies in this instance so I can point residents in the right direction.”
SEE VIDEO OF THE FLOODING AT: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FcWNwXzWXMI