Families near saturated fields fear being flooded out as downpours continue

Richard Chapplow of Redburn Row, Chilton Moor is concerned about the possible flooding due to the burn near his home not having been dredged for 40 years
Richard Chapplow of Redburn Row, Chilton Moor is concerned about the possible flooding due to the burn near his home not having been dredged for 40 years
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Worried families fear another downpour could see their homes flooded.

Residents in Redburn Row, Chilton Moor, say they have been watching in horror as the field opposite their homes turns into a lake every time it rains.

Flooding at Redburn Road, Chilton Moor

Flooding at Redburn Road, Chilton Moor

The water rises up to the edge of the field just metres from their Chilton Moor homes and the situation is getting worse.

Richard Chapplow, who lives opposite, said the Red Burn, which runs across the field, is overflowing due to the area under the bridge over the B1284 road being blocked up with years of compacted mud and debris.

The 69-year-old says it needs completely dredging and has highlighted it to Sunderland City Council several times over the past couple of years.

The retired electrician, who lives with his wife, Lena, 68, said he is terrified they will be next in line to see their homes devastated by flooding.

Pic of the bridge bocked by debris that local residents cause flooding at Redburn Row, Chilton Moor

Pic of the bridge bocked by debris that local residents cause flooding at Redburn Row, Chilton Moor

He said: “It is really frightening when the water levels rise. It has been so bad that I haven’t been able to sleep and have been staying downstairs to check the situation.

“All it will take is a flash flood for the water to be in our homes. You dread it whenever it starts raining.

“We have been in tears for the people in York and Cumbria affected by the flooding, it is heartbreaking for them.”

He said it doesn’t take long for water to cause huge devastation to houses.

Another householder in Redburn Row, Eric Hodgson, 84, who moved to the property with his wife, Margaret, 81, in 1973, said he has seen the situation getting worse.

He said: “There is flood defence work being carried out in other areas of Houghton, but it doesn’t seem to be here. I would have thought prevention is better than cure.”

Councillor Michael Mordey, Portfolio Holder for City Services, Sunderland City Council, said: “The city council is very aware of flooding risks across all our city.

“We work closely with the emergency services and partners such as the Environment Agency and Northumbrian Water on flood prevention. Following the latest winter storms, council staff have been clearing debris and we’re aware of concerns in the Houghton and Rainton areas. These concerns are being monitored and addressed.

“We would like to ask all residents to report any concerns about flooding in the first instance to their ward councillors or to call the council direct on 0191 520 5550. When we get the information first-hand, we can act without any delay.”

Councillor Juliana Heron said she and fellow ward member Bill Turton had worked alongside a council team to make regular checks on the stream and ensured it was cleared, but debris from surrounding fields continued to cause issues.

She said:”I myself have been down about half-a-dozen times to check on the levels and it’s all been down to extreme weather conditions.”