A COUPLE whose bungalow was ruined by flooding will spend Christmas away from home.
Gordon Coleman and his wife Margaret do not expect to be able to return to their bungalow in Selangor Avenue, Emsworth, until Easter.
All their furniture, fittings and carpets were a sodden mess yesterday as insurers carried out a survey.
Their home was swamped by 2ft of water from a field at the back of their property after a stream burst its banks following heavy rain on Thursday.
The couple have been staying in a holiday flat in Bognor – paid for by the insurance company – and will stay there over Christmas. After the festive season, the couple are not sure where they will go.
Mr Coleman, 70, said: ‘The whole place is going to have to be stripped out completely.
‘Last time the damage ran up to £50,000 in November 2010.
‘This is slightly worse than that. We won’t get back here until Easter.’
More heavy downpours were expected today and residents were being advised to be prepared as the rain is falling on saturated ground.
Mr Coleman added: ‘We won’t be here. The damage is done now.’
Residents in Emsworth are now pinning their hopes on a £1m flood protection scheme that will see two water storage ponds built.
Environment Agency officials say the work should take place in the next 18 months when they have all the funding in place.
Havant MP David Willetts said: ‘I had another meeting with the Environment Agency on flood issues across the entire borough.
‘I stressed to them the urgency of the work. They have now got a plan.
‘The sooner they can get on and implement it, the better.’