The Blame Game: Flooding on A46 at Holton le Moor

Kat Perry took this photograph of the Holton le Moor crossing on the A46 on November 9.
Kat Perry took this photograph of the Holton le Moor crossing on the A46 on November 9.

Two different organisations have denied responsibility for the flooding of a major trunk road which has led to delays, diversions and travel chaos.

The A46 - one of the busiest routes in Lincolnshire - was closed at Holton le Moor because of flooding.

However, the Environment Agency and Lincolnshire County Council deny they are responsible for the problem.

Local resident Philip Raven says the crossing has been closed for at least a week.

Mr Raven added: “It may be claimed that conditions this Autumn are unprecedented but if high rainfall is the result of a changing climate it could become the norm.

“It could also be said that the long term closure of the most obvious detour route through Holton le Moor for infrastructure works is unfortunate.

“Nevertheless, users are entitled to know from those responsible why this important route is vulnerable to such serious, localised flooding.

“Are the drainage arrangements properly designed and, if so, have they been correctly maintained?

“If, on the other hand, the system is considered inadequate for recent conditions, action to improve it is urgently required.”

Richard Fenwick, county highways manager at Lincolnshire County Council, said: “The past few months have been extremely wet.

“Over the last week, a huge volume of water has fallen on the surrounding fields and it would appear that their drainage systems have been overwhelmed.

“As a result, this water has overflowed onto the A46, flooding the road.

“We are currently working to identify who is responsible for the surrounding drainage so we can discuss ways to avoid future flooding.”

The Environment Agency said: “We deal with flooding from main rivers. The flooding at Holton le Moor is from surface water which is most likely handled by the Highways department at the County Council.”

Meanwhile, Binbrook has also been badly hit by recent floods.

Firefighters from Louth were present in the village last weekend in an attempt to control the water.

On Monday, Louth Fire Station tweeted: “Water is still flowing down Louth Road in Binbrook but we are making steady progress to stop the water levels from rising any higher.”

There are still fears of flooding in many areas of West Lindsey, despite an improvement in the weather.

At the time of going to press yesterday (Tuesday), a flood alert was still in place for the River Rase and Upper Ancholme.

In a statement, the Government’s Flood Warning Information Service said: “River levels remain high in the River Rase and Upper Ancholme catchment as a result of recent heavy rainfall.

“We are constantly monitoring river levels and have staff in the field checking for blockages, and clearing weed screens.

“Please avoid using low lying footpaths near local watercourses and plan driving routes to avoid low lying roads near rivers, which may be flooded.”

There is more positive news for Bishopbridge residents, as according to the flood warning service, the A631 in the village is ‘unaffected’.

As previously reported, Bishopbridge was badly hit by flooding over the last month.

Resident Julian Anyan has thanked the Environment Agency (EA) and the Market Rasen Mail for a ‘constructive approach’ to solving the issue.

According to the EA, Lincolnshire received twice the average rainfall during the month of September and two and a half times the average for October. The county has already suffered the entire average rainfall amount for November.

• After going to press, Richard Fenwick, county highways manager, said: “Over the last week, a huge volume of water has fallen on the surrounding fields, overwhelming their drainage systems. As a result, this water has overflowed onto the A46, flooding the road.

“The situation is being exacerbated by a culvert under the railway that is either blocked or damaged. Although this is not part of the highway, we’ve asked our contractor to fix this.

“In addition, we are currently working to identify who is responsible for the culvert and surrounding drainage systems so we can discuss ways to avoid future flooding.

“In the meantime, we have asked Anglian Water to suspend their works on the B1434 so we can put a much shorter diversion route in place while the A46 remains closed. This will be implemented as soon as Anglian Water have cleared the site.

“We realise this is a frustrating experience for motorists and can assure them we’re working hard to get the road re-opened.”