Cllr Eric Lawley writes:

Inspection of the ditch 23 March 2017

As reported at the meeting on 14th March some surface vegetation has been cut alongside the ditch but none of the work promised by WCC Highways (Patch Byrne) has been done. Although no date was given for this work participants believed that it would receive some priority.

The cutting of the surface vegetation had been misinterpreted as clearance action by WCC, which it was not.

At the meeting with P Byrne, R Wright, T Stevenson, D Kendall and E Lawley WCC agreed to clear the ditch and put a pipe under the gate entrance beyond the chicane.

There is the end of a black plastic pipe showing under the gate entrance on the village side of the chicane which would feed water towards the village. The lower edge of the pipe is now below the bottom of the ditch

The ditch has not been cleared and there is no pipe under the other gate entrance. Since the meeting with WCC the country was battered by storm Doris and possibly because of that there are dead tree branches now lying in the ditch.

Where the ditch feeds into the brook although there is both dead and new vegetation there is no obvious obstruction at that point. The base of the ditch is above the base of the brook and water from the ditch would be free to flow into the brook equally when the level rises in the brook it could back feed along the ditch.

In the absence of any immediate action by WCC is this a task for the lengthsman to clear away the debris and so reduce the obstruction risk ?

There is a bank between the road and the ditch with channels cut through to allow the water to drain off the road but conversely this also allows the water to flow onto the road in the event of the fields flooding.