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Derritt Lane resident thanks ‘local hero’ Richard Frampton for flooding help amid fears over 100-home scheme by Wyatt Homes for Bransgore

A VILLAGER who is regularly trapped in her home by floodwater outside has praised a local hero for taking action to solve the problem – but says she fears a new housing development will make the problem worse.

Sarah Olley lives on Bransgore’s Derritt Lane, a road notorious for impassable flooding after prolonged heavy rain. The recent downpours have seen her home inaccessible at times.

And despite Hampshire County Council closing the road, motorists removed barriers to gain access and drive through, creating waves of water which lap at her front door.

Flooding at Derritt Lane
Flooding at Derritt Lane

After telling HCC, Sarah said she was left frustrated as the council said it was unable to provide her with sandbags but said she could collect some from its Lymington depot – something she was unable to do as the floodwater meant she could not leave her property.

But coming to her rescue was “local hero” farmer Richard Frampton, a former independent New Forest district councillor, who used his tractor to clear debris from around a one-mile stretch of the nearby Clockhouse Stream.

As a result, floodwater fell by around two feet.

He also helped to block a pipe which was causing a reverse flow of water into Derritt Lane.

Sarah explained: “There has been a lack of maintenance over the years, but I have never seen it this bad.

“[Richard] is always helping out locally – when people have been trapped in their cars in the floods, he has come along to get them to safety.

“He and his son do a lot for the village.”

Richard Frampton
Richard Frampton

In response, Richard said: “The problems were simple ones to fix, in fairness.

“I wouldn’t say I am a hero – it is more that I have got the local knowledge.

“I am only doing what anyone else in the village would do – it’s just I have more toys!”

As reported in the A&T, a 100-home scheme was approved by NFDC last year for land south of Derritt Lane, despite opposition from Bransgore and Sopley parish councils, plus more than 140 objectors, who raised concerns over flooding.

Sarah said: “The problem is, where they are building the new houses, the fields are completely flooded – the water table is very high.

“I don’t begrudge new homes being built but if they don’t resolve this problem, it will keep happening and impact an even greater number of people.”

But a spokesperson for Wyatt Homes, which is behind the new scheme, said there was no cause for concern over the development.

The field north of Clockhouse Stream was responsible for the road flooding Bransgore side of the bridge on Derritt Lane
The field north of Clockhouse Stream was responsible for the road flooding Bransgore side of the bridge on Derritt Lane
Flooding on the Bransgore side of Derritt Lane which came from the flooded field
Flooding on the Bransgore side of Derritt Lane which came from the flooded field

“We have undertaken a thorough planning process and, having considered both local insights and expert advice, are confident that the proposed development would not be at risk of flooding and will not contribute to flooding in the surrounding area,” they said.

“By directing surface water run-off to a network of shallow linear basins and swales, we ensure the careful capture and gradual, safe discharge of water into Clockhouse Stream.

“The proposed sustainable drainage system has been designed to take future climate change into account to provide a net improvement over the site remaining undeveloped.”

They added: “The development plans explicitly exclude any built structures in the floodplain, aligning with best practices for flood risk mitigation.

“The proposals have also been assessed by both Hampshire County Council and the Environment Agency, which are both in support of the scheme.”

Responding to the flooding on Derritt Lane, HCC’s cabinet member for universal services, Cllr Nick Adams-King, said it had been caused by the nearby watercourse overflowing, and was the responsibility of the Environment Agency and riparian owners to maintain.

Sarah Olley's home has repeatedly flooded
Sarah Olley's home has repeatedly flooded

A spokesperson for the Environment Agency told the A&T: “The area around Derritt Lane, Bransgore, is within the floodplain and, given recent high rainfall on already saturated ground, it is possible that any property flooding was from surface water, or a combination of surface and stream water.

“Earlier this year we met with residents from the Sopley and Ripley area, and as a result we are helping some by providing equipment to help prevent flooding to individual homes.

“If people in Bransgore are affected by flooding and meet the necessary flooding criteria, we will also try to help them.”

Rescues amid flooding on Derritt Lane in March 2022
Rescues amid flooding on Derritt Lane in March 2022

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