Sunday, July 29, 2007

Gants Hill Tube Flood

the central hall between the platforms at Gants Hill tube stationOne of our members has asked that we raise the issue that on Friday 20th July Gants Hill tube Station was closed from around 12noon til 6pm. This was as a result of the torrential downpour on that day. Note that this is Gants HILL, not exactly a low lying area. Enquiries with the station staff indicate that the station has been closed 6 times in the last two months due to “flooding”. I can concur that this was a regular feature during my years as a commuter but that ended in 1996.

What is not clear is who is responsible. The station staff say it is up to the Council to maintain the drains in the subway. However there is a Regeneration project underway for this whole area and TfL are a partner so maybe this can be included?? Would any Councillor or Assembly member care to comment? Or is it another case of budget bun-fights?

And while we are on the subject are our Councillors aware of SUDS – Sustainable Urban Drainage Systems? If not may I suggest they clue themselves up on it. It doesn’t need an all-expenses paid trip to see how others are doing it, it’s all there on the internet and you all have laptops paid for out of our council Tax. You have to move your mouse so that your cursor turns into a hand symbol over the highlighted text and then click your mouse button. It really is much easier than organising a “jolly”.
See later posts:

14 comments:

  1. I avoid Gants Hill as much as is practically possible so didn't see the effects of recent flooding.
    However, a brief look at the drain outside Barkingside Police Station will reveal how much importance out local authority give to this issue. It's been blocked for years.

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  2. I can remember a heck of a spat a few years ago about who owned the South Woodford Tube underpass, when there were truck loads of graffiti and litter there; turned out it was the Underground's property and responsibility.

    On that basis, I assume that the Gants Hill subways are TfL property.

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  3. As an OPPOSITION councillor- I wholeheartedly agree! I tried to use Gants Hill Tube Station on Thursday at 5pm to get to the Scissors Sisters at the O2.( OK - you may think I'm sad but they are great!) As I am partially disabled, this is the only accessible tube station in my local area. I was told - in no uncertain terms- that I couldn't use the flooded tube at Gants Hill. Eventually, with my walking aids - I managed to get there via Ilford station and had to spent the whole of the next day in real pain. This drainage situation is stupid!

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  4. Also want to say that the Gants Hill subways belong to the local authority - it is only the ticket office that is the resonsibilty of TfL

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  5. I'm afraid lindae is wrong. The subways belong, so far as I know, to TfL (you know them - Ken Livingstone's playtoy). Redbridge is supposed to clean them, but it certainly used to be the case that London Underground were very much less than prompt with their payments.

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  6. Sorry Morris whilst I am prepared to accept your greater knowledge on this technicality - I have also been advised that the sweeping of the Gants Hill Tube station subways should be carried out on a daily basis by a LB Redbridge Barrow beat( Road sweeper). I have never seen a road sweeper there - do they actually really exist? Or can I assume the rain swept the dirt down the drains - which is why they actually got blocked in the first place? Whoops!

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  7. Garden Birdwatcher9:48 pm, July 31, 2007

    Lindae, I don't go out of my way to check the subway every day to see if they have been cleaned, but I am sure they do this at least once or twice a month and it's not a bad job.

    When I enter the subway from the Woodford Avenue/Gaysham Avenue entrance, you can see the drainage channels running across the path (not just along the walls) and both are too narrow. Often the grates have come out because perhaps someone tripped up on them. It doesn't help that there is a lot of takeaway food dumped down in the subway which causes more blockage. Often there is rubbish coming from the neighbouring shops, especially on very windy days.

    I would like to know who has ultimate responsibility for the subway.

    I don't know if someone saw Don't Get Mad, Get Dom a few weeks ago, but TfL moved a bus stop (I think in South London) and both the local council and police objected to the move as they had serious reservations about it. TfL moved the bus stop anway which caused the problems that were predicted. I don't know how long after, but Dom managed to get TfL to listen to the residents about this error of judgement and the bus stop was moved back for £65,000. It was like TfL went through the motions of doing a consultation process, but had no intention of listening. So, we shall see what happens on this issue.

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  8. It is quite possible, Lindae, that we are both right, but let me put to you a question. As the Council is contracted by TfL to provide the service at an agreed cost, should the Council continue to do it when TfL fail to pay?

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  9. I thought the subway belonged to the council and the ticket hall and station to London Underground, but there seems to be some disagreement. The pivture is further complicated because the A12 belongs to TfL but the other three roads belong to the council - a constant problem for the business partnership.

    Anyway, I have put a question down for the Mayor to answer in September. Then we will have his take on what is to be done and who is responsible.

    And I have actually been to see a sustainable drainage system, out at Heathrow. I'm sure it's a good thing and we recommended more of them in our flooding review four years ago, but it still looked like it was just a bed of reeds.

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  10. Thanks, Roger.
    And well done on SUDS.

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  11. The A1400 (Woodford Avenue), and the A123 (Cranbrook Road) may be also TfL roads leaving just Clarence Avenue and Perth Road as borough roads. The subway does not go under either of those.

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  12. Good point Morris.
    Can't imagine our Council having money to spend putting in those cycle lanes between Gants Hill and the Beehive roundabout, can you?

    Likewise the proposed bus lanes in Cranbrook.

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  14. This has been reported in the Wanstead & Woodford Guardian

    http://www.guardian-series.co.uk/redbridgenews/news/display.var.1598453.0.commuters_slam_tube_flood_closure.php#comments

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