Burst water pipe adds to misery of flooded Newton Poppleford

A DOZEN houses have been affected by floodwater in Newton Poppleford, with neighbours rallying to help those in distress

A DOZEN houses have been affected by floodwater in Newton Poppleford, with neighbours rallying to help those in distress.

A burst main under a swollen stream had left some homes without water, but by lunchtime yesterday all properties had supplies restored, although 17 homes in Woodleys Drive and Exeter Road were being advised to boil water before consuming it.

Parish council chairman Bryan Woodley said: "Most of the people are busy clearing up and getting insurance companies involved.

"One or two disabled people were affected and professional people moved in to help them.

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"Ground floors are ruined. Having once been flooded myself it is very cold and wet. You have nowhere to go and sit down and keep warm."

With Back Brook bursting its banks as well as the River Otter flooding, people at the northern end of Exeter Road as well as Venn Ottery Road were affected.

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"All the properties have a history of flooding, it has all happened before," said Mr Woodley, whose own yard at The Falls was under threat.

"Ground floors have been ruined. People are struggling to cope with what they have got.

"It is too early to say what is going to happen, some have lost water supplies at the northern end because of the water leak and Back Brook is outside my yard."

He said people had good neighbours in the village who were looking after those in trouble.

"It is not the same situation here as it is in Ottery St Mary, which has a real problem, though it is bad enough. The real problem is not having any heating and water. We have had no injuries as far as I know."

Parish clerk David Atkins added: "In the Otter Reach area one or two got wet and the playing field and George Pearce's yard at Bridge End were flooded.

"There was a foot of water over the tennis courts and the river is running very high.

A spokeswoman for South West Water said adverse weather conditions had delayed the repair of the burst pipe under Back Brook, which had been isolated and other supplies re-directed to the village to ensure everyone had water.

She said: "When the water level goes down we will repair it. We have had to shut down a section of pipe and have brought in supplies from other networks."

Those having to boil water, in case of contamination by river water, will be informed when it is safe to stop doing so, she added.

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