Chingford News

Two flood warnings issued in Waltham Forest

Residents near Ching Brook are warned to be especially vigilant this evening
By Victoria Munro

Water levels in Ching Brook are dangerously high and flooding is expected (credit: Sinead Morgan)
Water levels in Ching Brook are dangerously high and flooding is expected (credit: Sinead Morgan)

Two different flood warnings have been issued for Waltham Forest, as the borough prepares for a repeat of last summer’s flash floods.

The Government has warned that “flooding of property and roads” around Ching Brook, which travels through Chingford and down to Hale End, is likely for the rest of the evening.

An announcement issued at 5.40pm warns flood water “could be deep and fast flowing”, warning residents to “remain vigilant and avoid these areas”.

The river levels are expected to fall later on tonight and drier weather should resume tomorrow morning.

A separate flood warning has been issued for the lower River Lee, which passes through Walthamstow, but this is less severe and not expected to flood homes.

(Credit: Jennifer Damant)

Last July, torrential rain caused “knee-high” floods that damaged local homes and caused a power outage in Whipps Cross Hospital.

Despite widespread criticism over insufficient drain cleaning, Waltham Forest Council published a report earlier this year which concluded the floods were not made worse by any problem with the drains.

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In a tweet today, Waltham Forest Council said its staff “has been out the last two days cleaning roads and checking gullies in flood-prone areas” to prepare for predicted storms.

They added: “We’re seeing heavy rainfall and there is some surface water… officers are out again this afternoon keeping a close eye on the situation.”

Flooding in Higham Hill (credit: Sophie Wilson)

Already residents in a number of streets around the borough have reported flooding on the road, posting photos of foot-high water.

A teacher living in Higham Hill told the Echo she is already trapped in her house by rising floodwater and feels not enough has been done since last year’s floods.

She said: “I am currently trapped in my house because the water is up to my doorstep. My bike is stuck in the hanger in the photo surrounded by foul water. Our car is trapped in the car park.

“Nothing has been done to help us since last year. We have had investigation after investigation and repairs but no actual prevention.” 

Community group Friends of Walthamstow Marshes has been quick to criticise the council, tweeting: “It’s happening again due to the utter failure of Waltham Forest Council to do their jobs. Manholes remained blocked last year and flashfloods are already happening.”

If you’re badly affected by flooding, please get in touch by emailing [email protected].

Report flooding to the council on their website here.

Find our follow-up coverage on this story here.

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