A COUNCILLOR has called on residents to keep pressure on a water firm as a clogged-up drain is fouling a park.

Sewage regularly overflows from a manhole close to the Woods Meadow play area during periods of heavy rainfall.

That’s a big concern to Jamie Matthews but the leak has been deemed “not a priority” by Southern Water as few people have raised the alarm.

The Woods Meadow area is something of a sewage bottleneck as pipes from the Highfield Road, Stafford Road and Tilmore Gardens areas converge underneath into a single pipe that runs towards Station Road.

To make matters worse the pipe has become clogged with tree roots, fat and grease, with the combination taking up close to 80 per cent of the available space in places.

Cllr Matthews reported two leaks during the last week of October by tagging @SouthernWater on X, formerly known as Twitter, on his post.

He has encouraged residents to do likewise either through the social media account, by phoning 0330 303 0368 or by typing ‘blocked or flooded sewer’ into the search browser at www.southernwater.co.uk and clicking the link. Users should quote Woods Meadow Play Area, GU32 2JF as the site reference.

He said: “We’re getting into winter so we’re going to have more rainfall and this is likely to happen more often.

“Southern Water carried out CCTV surveys of the sewer pipes through there and the water meadows and have pulled out some tree root mass but now they’re also saying they need to carry out additional work.

“Southern Water have bigger sewage problems elsewhere but we’ve definitely got it on their radar and we’re keeping up contact. But we need people to play their part. They need to report every incident to keep momentum up.”

He added: “They’re not going to provide an immediate response but then again, they’ve not had many reports over the years.”