RADICAL schemes to alleviate flooding in Buckskin will be investigated today, with the situation set to get worse.
That was the news from Tony Curtis, chief executive of Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council, when he spoke to residents gathered at the Ridgeway Community Centre last night.
He said the latest advice from the Environment Agency was that groundwater levels are expected to rise, and that it could be until April when residents start to see a reduction in the water level.
Mr Curtis said he contacted Gold Command, the county-wide body looking at flooding, for more help, and as a result, Army and emergency services personnel will scope out some more radical solutions today.
He said: “I have no idea whether they will be successful or not but we are going to try everything.
“We will do everything we can to resolve the situation.”
A total of 69 homes in Buckskin have been evacuated since groundwater first started to seep into people’s homes on Saturday, February 8. The water is contaminated with sewage.
Mr Curtis said tankers employed by the borough council had sucked up 77 million litres of floodwater since the crisis began.
But he warned there is a limit to how much of that water can be dumped at the Chineham sewage treatment works, leading borough planners to look into the feasibility of setting up a reservoir.
He said the use of tankers will continue until a better solution is found.
Work will continue to save the sub-station in Worting Road, the meeting also heard.
More than 50 residents attended the meeting, some of whom live in houses that have not yet been affected by the flooding.
Sophie Millington, 37, told The Gazette that her and her husband will start to pack their belongings after hearing the glum outlook at the meeting. They live in Cairngorm Close, not far from flooded homes in Prescelly Close.
She said: “We are concerned because we are very close to the water and hearing tonight that the water is going to get higher is a bit scary.”
Some had already made the decision to leave their home.
Denise Walker, 62, left her home in Bodmin Close on Sunday, February 9, with her husband Mike, who is battling a brain tumour.
At that point, the water was running through her garden, but it has now found its way into the house.
She said: “It is heartbreaking. There are a lot of unhappy people here.”