COLUMNIST: Mike Mendoza on drainage

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THERE are several planning applications in with the Adur planners, some already approved by committee.

A lot of what I see I like, it’s a shame so many object to any way that takes us forward. But I do have concerns, no not about designs, who is overlooking who, roof styles etc. My concern is drainage and the apparent total lack of investment by Southern Water into providing adequate sewerage pipes.

My concerns about the sewage that flows from the houseboats directly into the river have fallen on deaf ears for many years. I was disappointed there was no mention of this with regards to any future Adur Plan. There is no excuse for human waste to be discharged directly into a river or estuary.

At the height of summer, the smell can be appalling, and I am sure it is a health hazard. I place a lot of the blame directly on Southern Water, with whom I discussed this more than ten years ago.

It appears the situation has been totally ignored by all concerned, or should that be ‘not concerned’.

My other issue with Southern Water has to be the drainage and sewerage in the entire district. Last year we had an awful situation in St Giles Close, Shoreham, where sewers totally collapsed, causing severe flooding. We had human waste floating about the road and inside garages plus terrible smells.

The entire problem was caused by pipes that were far too small for the number of homes. The original system was put in place long before the building of Orchard Gate’s 200 homes.

Apart from human waste, we found used nappies etc that had been flushed down the toilet by inconsiderate residents.

Is a six or nine-inch pipe large enough to take the amount of waste that is generated by several hundred homes? How long before we see more bursting with the pressure of use?

Workers repairing the pipes in St Giles were surprised the area was being served by such small pipes.

Their instructions were to replace like for like.

Before our council agrees to any further major developments, Southern Water must take responsibility and supply adequate drainage.

Surely the water companies’ massive profits should be reinvested into the infrastructure to give us all a safe and healthy environment.