Hornchurch residents’ association calls on council to prevent flooding

The recent flooding at Abbs Cross Lane, near the railway bridge. 

The recent flooding at Abbs Cross Lane, near the railway bridge. - Credit:  Hornchurch Residents’ Association

A Hornchurch resident’s association is calling for action to prevent the "constant threat of flooding" damaging properties on a particular stretch.  

Some flooding on Abbs Cross Lane was reported by residents to the Hornchurch Residents’ Association on June 17 and 18, separately to flash floods and heavy rain which battered Collier Row, Harold Hill, Gidea Park and nearby areas this weekend.

Cllr Paul Middleton (Saint Andrews, Residents' Group) and Cllr Ray Morgon (Hacton, Residents' Group) attended the first flood to “offer support” and “manage the traffic” in a bid to minimise disruption and damage to properties.  

The flooding has, according to Cllr Gerry O’Sullivan (Saint Andrews, Residents' Group), been “ongoing for years”.  

However, Havering Council said it’s a matter for Thames Water.  

Cllr O’Sullivan said: “The council do clean the drains out on a regular basis, but dirty drains are not the real issue. 

“The problem is that the drains cannot cope with the vast volumes of water with which they are now dealing."

Acknowledging this isn’t an “easy problem to resolve”, Cllr O’Sullivan said it is a problem that will only get worse as climate change has an impact on the weather.  

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A spokesperson for Thames Water said the company is aware of recent flooding and “regularly maintain” the area's network to keep it in the “best condition” ready for rainfall. 

The spokesperson said: “On top of this, we are arranging a further inspection using remote cameras to check the system is in good working order. 

“On Friday (June 18), our engineers confirmed there are no blockages on our network in this area and there is an issue with drainage on nearby London Underground land. 

"This is TfL’s responsibility and needs to be investigated further. We have contacted TfL and Havering Council about this issue.” 

A spokesperson for TfL looked into the flooding and said the land is owned by Network Rail.

Residents have been in touch with the council over the years, Cllr O’Sullivan said: “I want to see some action taken so that the residents can be removed from the constant threat of flooding.

"It’s sad because it has gone on for many years."

Network Rail has been contacted for comment.

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