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Cabinet Member visits Ross-on-Wye following flood


Hereford Voice

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Following the recent flooding event, Cllr Barry Durkin, Cabinet Member for Roads and Regulatory Services, has visited Ross-on-Wye to hear from local people and follow the ongoing investigation.

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Broad Street has now been reopened to traffic, however, for safety reasons some parts of the walkways remained closed. Brookend Street is open to traffic and most of the shops are trading, which is good news. It is important to support businesses, especially with this type of emergency event, so that they are able to function effectively and get back to normality as soon as possible. Most of the shops along both streets are open and a letter has been hand distributed to properties affected by the flooding event, providing further information and advice.

The initial response phase is now coming to a close and Herefordshire Council has undertaken all of the work that it can, until investigations and work by Welsh Water are completed. We will now be working closely with Welsh Water going forward, to determine how and when to commence the recovery phase.

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When appropriate, permanent works will need to be undertaken to the highway along Broad Street and the walkways to be made safe. However, we are constrained from the issuing of permanent works until Welsh Water are able to confirm that they have reviewed and dealt with their sewer issues. Without that assurance, it would not be appropriate or prudent to issue a programme of permanent works. Once confirmed the Council will commence this phase as soon as possible to enable a permanent programme to be issued and Broad Street to be reinstated at the earliest and safest opportunity.

Cllr Durkin, following his visit to Ross-on-Wye, said: “On Tuesday I visited shops along Brookend Street to better understand how they were individually impacted by the flood event. It was heart rending to see the damage caused and the effect of the disruption to shop owners and their premises, by the events of Sunday’s storm and sewer collapse, but importantly, Ross-on-Wye remains open for business. The emergency response to these events by Balfour Beatty Living Places was exemplary and their work has been much appreciated and indeed their ongoing work attending to issues remains first class. Further, my thanks to members of the Town Council for their reporting of events locally as they occurred for social media. I spoke with a town council member today and listened to her immediate concerns regarding the substrate of the footpaths; which has been investigated.

“I have spoken with a number of shop owners and residents and seen some of the remaining damage to their shops and houses, caused by the heavy storm water and the collapse of the sewer, running down Broad Street and through Brookend Street. The collapse in a section of one of the sewers that runs down Broad Street has been found and Welsh Water are working to investigate and repair those sections identified.

“Cross-organisational work continues between Herefordshire Council, Welsh Water, and the Environment Agency officers each carrying out their individual assessments and assessing works required. Drainage investigation work has been undertaken by Herefordshire Council, with highway gullies and associated pipework being checked and cleansed. As soon as possible and in conjunction with Welsh Water’s upcoming work programme, a permanent repair programme to reinstate the Broad Street highway and walkways will be implemented.”

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