Clare: Long-running water leak baffles experts

A MYSTERY water leak that has plagued a street for more than a decade has left experts bewildered.

Residents in Clare have appealed to Anglian Water over many years to stop the water pouring down their road. And when a second leak sprung up on a nearby pathway two months ago they demanded action.

Bed and breakfast owner David Salter, 69, who lives close to the leaks on Cavendish Road, said: “Thousands of gallons must have been wasted as it just keeps flowing. When the second leak started, engineers from Anglian Water did come out and for 12 hours it stopped but then started again at a faster rate.

“Now the cold weather is here we are concerned the road and pavement will ice up making it treacherous.”

Ciaran Nelson, from Anglian Water, admitted that after a decade of investigations into the leaks they were as much a mystery to them as they were to residents.

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“We’ve used every trick in the book,” said Mr Nelson. “We’ve dug up the road. We’ve used oversized digital ear-trumpets in the middle of the night to listen to what’s going on under ground.

“We’ve tested the water to see if it contains traces of chlorine that would help us prove that it’s treated tap water. We’ve even passed a current through the pipes to see if we can locate a crack in them, and we’ve drawn a blank every time.”

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He said water could be finding its way to the surface from a spring rumoured to be in the area.

“We’ve reached a dead end,” he added. “What we can say is that, at this moment, we don’t believe it’s Anglian Water’s pipes that are the source. We have spoken to the council and asked them to check that their surface water drains are clear of any blockages or debris.

“But if that too doesn’t show up any problems, we may have to face the fact that this is natural water simply working its way through the ground.”

A Suffolk County Council spokesperson said: “The county council has investigated this issue at some length, with no evidence to suggest a problem with highway drainage.

“We will provide any further assistance to Anglian Water which may help them to identify a solution to this problem.”

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