VIDEO: Kicking up a stink over raw sewage in streets

Fed up residents are calling for urgent action to tackle stinky drains after raw sewage leaked into the street three times in a matter of weeks.

People living on Green Gate Close in Bolton-upon-Dearne have complained about a “terrible smell” in their road ever since the drains allegedly overflowed three times in February.

Les Atkins, of Green Gate Close, Bolton is complaining about the raw sewage leak on the road. Picture: Andrew Roe

Les Atkins, of Green Gate Close, Bolton is complaining about the raw sewage leak on the road. Picture: Andrew Roe

Yorkshire Water admitted there has been “operational problems” at the site this week as one elderly resident said it had caused his health to deteriorate.

Meanwhile, school children are faced with running a gauntlet of bad odours on their walks to and from the nearby school.

Resident Les Atkins, 69, said: “The mell is absolutely foul. You can smell it on the street, and it is that bad it seeps through my walls when I am in my living room.

“There is a drain which burst three times in February. There was raw sewage on the road. Some of it is still there. They never cleared it away properly.

Ralph Sixsmith MBE

Ralph Sixsmith MBE

“Someone from Yorkshire Water came out and said they had released a valve to ease pressure on older pipes further along the line.”

The former coal miner said he suffers from Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) - a respiratory disease - and the smell had caused his condition to worsen.

He said: “It really hasn’t helped. There are a lot of elderly people who live on this road who will have similar conditions.

“There is a school at the end of the road too and its not nice for school children to walk through every morning and night.”

Dave Liversidge, caretaker at Carrfield Primary Academy, said there had been a sewage leak through a grate on the school fields a few years ago but thankfully there had been no such burst recently.

The 62-year-old, of Hooton Roberts, added: “The last time it happened it caused major problems. Everyone was complaining about the smell.

“There hasn’t been an issue so far but I will be keeping an eye on the situation because the last thing we want is it to happen again.”

Councillor Ralph Sixsmith MBE said a number of residents had raised the issue with him and he was due to make a site visit on Tuesday to ask residents for their views.

He added: “There are a lot of vulnerable, elderly people who live on that road so the issue needs resolving as quickly as possible. There is a crack in one of the drains and a problem with the cover. The smell is intermittent. The council has referred it to Yorkshire Water.”

Coun May Noble, who used to live in the road, added: “There is a problem with a particular drain, which is leaking at the moment and has done a couple of times before. Yorkshire Water are aware of it and are tackling it.”

A spokesperson for Yorkshire Water said: “Refurbishment work was completed at Highgate Sewage Pumping Station back in December. Since then we have responded to operational problems on our network.

“The areas the customers are referring to are the points that relieve air pressure in our system. This is what we describe as normal operation but we do recognise the concerns of the residents.

“We will be continuing to work on the system to try and reduce the impact on customers. We will be looking at putting odour controls in place to combat the problem and will continue to work closely with residents.”