THIS WEEK IN 1989: Flood chaos drowns Wickham for a day

The pipe was plugged by Portsmouth Water Company workers after 30 minutes (B4928-1)
The pipe was plugged by Portsmouth Water Company workers after 30 minutes (B4928-1)
A 1903 picture showing 'Point A on the Portsdown & Horndean Light Railway where two former horse tram cars acted as shelters.
Picture: Barry Cox Collection

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A burst water main pipe left part of Wickham nearly two feet underwater, reducing rush hour traffic to a chaotic crawl.

Thousands of gallons of water gushed out of the pipe at the bottom of Hoads Hill, rushing down the hill either side of Wickham service station –flooding Fareham Road and School Road.

At one point there were fears that tankers serving the garage would be forced to delay deliveries because of the rising water level, but these proved unfounded.

The pipe burst at 8.50am and alarmed lifelong Wickham resident Peter Merrett, 60, of School Road.

He said: ‘It went off like a gun, but we didn’t think any more of it until we saw the road was flooded.’

The pipe was plugged by Portsmouth Water Company workers after 30 minutes.