Bury St Edmunds residents hit by mystery flooding in cellars for two months question results of investigation into its cause
Residents who were hit by flooding in their cellars for two months say the results of an investigation into the cause leave more questions than answers.
Seven homes in Blomfield Street, Bury St Edmunds, were affected by the problem - with some forced to pump water out of their houses.
The cause of the flooding remained a mystery after Anglian Water found no issues with its pipes.
A Suffolk County Council investigation though concluded that groundwater entered the basements as the natural level rose due to ‘significant rainfall’ and ruled out causes such as surface water and leaking utility services.
However, residents have questioned the findings after the water began to dry up two weeks ago despite recent rainfall.
Terry Biggs, 67, said: “We haven’t had the weather for it to dry up.”
He also pointed to the volume of water in their cellar after he and his partner Marlene Palmer removed about 60 gallons a day.
“We were taking buckets of water out and each bucket was two gallons,” he said.
“Marlene’s son put a pump in and we were still taking out 20 to 30 gallons a day with buckets on the floor. Eventually we gave up because it was making us ill. It was a horrendous job.
“Then all of a sudden it goes as quick as it comes and there are no answers. I think they’re just using the groundwater as a cop out really.”
He noted that some drains in and around the street had been cleared but did not know if that would have had an effect.
Mr Biggs said they were using a dehumidifier in the cellar, which was still damp, and estimated the water had caused thousands of pounds in damage.
Peter Burn, who was also affected, said it seemed ‘strange’ as to why they suddenly had flooding when they hadn’t previously.
A county council spokesman said the Environment Agency issued groundwater flood alerts for Bury St Edmunds on January 28.
“Levels in Bury rose by approximately 1.4m in the seven weeks preceding the basement flood reports, and was between 1.7m and 1.8m higher than the typical winter peak,” he said.
The authority is drafting an investigation report and looking at what can be done to reduce flood risk.