Rugby borough residents fear worse floods if new developments are approved - The Rugby Observer

Rugby borough residents fear worse floods if new developments are approved

Rugby Editorial 10th Mar, 2016 Updated: 27th Oct, 2016   0

UNPRECEDENTED floods around Rugby yesterday (Wednesday March 9) have stoked the fears of campaigners who worry proposed developments could see their neighbourhoods waterlogged.

Flood waters invaded the roads, driveways and gardens of Draycote – where villagers fear a proposed nearby quarry could increase the risk of flooding.

And water up to a metre deep built up at flood-defence walls and flowed into the street around houses in Rokeby – where residents had objected to a recently-refused housing estate at nearby Ashlawn Fields on grounds of increased flood risks.

A site which straddles the B4453 ‘straight mile’ to the south of the A45 has been identified as the number one option for mineral development by Warwickshire County Council.

Residents fear the quarry – which would be around the size of 110 international rugby pitches and dig up to three million tonnes of sand and gravel – could hugely increase flooding risks, as nearby Draycote lies 38 metres below the extraction site.

And the brook which runs through the hamlet burst its banks yesterday (Wednesday March 9) despite a flood alleviation scheme being implemented two years ago.

Draycote resident Ioan Morgan said: “With this evidence of how vulnerable Draycote is to excessive rainfall and hugely increased volumes of water rushing through our village, it is no wonder residents live in fear of what might happen if the massive sand and gravel quarrying proposal is approved by the county council.

“Shire Hall planners and all involved must think again and go back to the drawing board.”

Meanwhile, campaigners who opposed a plan to build 860 houses between Ashlawn Road and Norton Leys – which was rejected by Rugby Borough Council in January on the grounds it would lead to an increase in traffic – fear their concerns over flooding could be ignored if the decision is appealed.

Coun Bill Lewis, ward councillor for Rokeby and Overslade and spokesman for Stop Ashlawn Road Development (SARD), said he was concerned objections over flooding risks were not upheld when the plan was initially rejected.

He added the risk was all too plain when water built up around flood defences behind homes in Brafield Leys and flowed into the street yesterday.

Water up to a metre deep flowed around flood-defence walls at houses in Brayfield Leys – which back onto the Ashlawn fields where a housing estate was refused planning permission in January.

He said: “They built a wall around the back of three of the properties because of the flooding in 2007.

“The water was just at the top of the wall, at least a metre deep, and was coming under, through the gardens and lawns, and flooding the road outside.

“Although our objection over flood risk was not accepted by planning officers as reasons to refuse the Ashlawn Road application, SARD intends to pursue it further as an objection to any appeal by the developer.”


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