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Torrential rain lifts the tarmac in Lancaster


Flash-flooding at Stonewell in Lancaster on 19 July 2017
Flash-flooding at Stonewell in Lancaster on 19 July 2017
Chris Satori

Torrential rain hit Lancaster yesterday and left a right mess in its wake as flooding gushed down streets, lifting tarmac and manhole covers and inundating the Stonewell area. Parts of Willow Lane, St George's Quay, Caton Road and Torrisholme Road were also flooded as was the subway by the Three Mariners Pub. 

Prospect St had to be closed off at the Bowerham Road end as tarmac round manholes and seams came loose, and Moor Lane has been reduced to one lane below the canal bridge, where some large patches of road were lifted. Eyewitnesses report seeing water gushing down Moor Lane and Bowerham Road and coming up like a geyser from the drains in Stonewell.

Part of Caton Road near the Heysham Gateway flooded, with worried drivers reporting a hole in the road where a manhole cover had lifted. 

Although the flood took out Lancaster City Council's telephone network and computer systems, Council workers were out there checking for blocked drains and hazards and clearing wreckage but said there were no blockages, the drainage system just couldn't handle the sudden large volume of water. 

When the going gets tough, the tough get going

Shops in Stonewell flooded. GoBurrito reported that the investment they'd made in flood protection measures such as raising the electrical wiring really paid off, but they had a long night or it cleaning up, and so did the Stonewell Tavern (funk club tonight). We're happy to report that they're dried out, cleaned up and open for business again now. Respect!

Nice'n'Spicy tell me that they are still delivering delicious food but the shop isn't open for over-the-counter collections just yet. (They were a bit deeper down the street). They hope to be opening their doors to customers again very soon.  In the meantime, if you fancy something Nice'n'Spicy you can call them on 01524 33333. 

The Blue Moon Thai Restaurant is also closed but hopes to be back soon too. 

A bad week for United Utilities?

Lancastrians were left wondering how this can happen after all the work done by United Utilities, which disrupted the city centre for six months just a couple of years ago. Previously flooding sometimes happened in Autumn and was usually due to leaves falling and blocking the drains faster than the Council could sweep them up. Fortunately these floods weren't as deep as in 2015, and there are no flood warnings at present, but it's not long until winter, and we can do without this happening again. 

United Utilities had a bad day yesterday as they were also found guilty of supplying bacterially contaminated water to residents across much of Lancashire July and August 2015. Sentencing will take place in Preston on 21 August. Earlier in the week they also had to deal with a broken water main close to the Cuadrilla fracking site (also flooded) at Preston New Road, which left parts of Blackpool and the Fylde without water. It's not all bad news for them though as in May they reported an operating profit of £605.5m.