Flooding concerns as developer plans to raise up homes

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RESIDENTS living near the site of a proposed housing development have said they are worried about flooding.

Developer Barratt Homes wants to build 25 homes in Windmill Grove, Portchester on a former factory site.

But Portchester residents voiced their anger at a Community Action Team meeting last night as plans show the ground the homes will sit on will be raised. They are concerned this will lead to their homes being flooded.

Paul Davies, 69, of Cador Drive, said the developer must contribute to work on the flood wall, which needs to be repaired.

He said: ‘I don’t think a lot of people would object to the site, the design is acceptable.

‘But sadly there is a very big flood risk there.

‘If you raise the site all it will do, to the west and to the east, it will cause further flooding on the estate.

‘The answer is to get the developer to put some funding into the sea wall and do that stretch, and not raise the site.’

The plan shows the homes will be raised to avoid any flood risk.

Mark Wyatt, principal planner at the council, told people it has already asked Barratt Homes if raising the homes is the best solution to tidal flooding.

Mr Wyatt was presenting the plans to residents, but not supporting them.

Terence Hunt, 56, of Windmill Grove, said the application should have been thrown out by Fareham Borough Council’s planning officers.

He said: ‘It should have been thrown out straightaway, it’s a nonsense.

‘If it was my property and I was doing it as an individual you would be all over me.’

He added he was concerned that the developer was only working to protect new houses, not existing homes.

Paul Cussell, 34, lives in Windmill Grove and said his home almost flooded over Christmas.

He said: ‘My garden was about 300mm under water at Christmas.

‘If that entire site is raised by 900mm, all of the water that would have been sitting there is going to be running off on to the properties.

‘I was probably 50mm from my house being flooded, if that site was 900mm higher, I probably would have been looking at an insurance claim.’

Portchester CAT chairman Cllr Nick walker said the cost of replacing the flood wall would be more than any developer contribution.