RESIDENTS in Aldbourne are having to put on wellies just to step out of their front door because the spring water is so deep it is flooding the pavements. Meanwhile in the village centre, manholes are bubbling over with waste from the sewers.

Lesley Whelan, who has lived in the village for two years, lives just off Lottage Road. She said: “I think it’s a lot deeper than last year, but it’s better. Last year people were walking around with toilet paper on their boots. “It’s not so bad unless the cars rush through.”

Thames Water are checking the levels every day, but are not concerned that the flooding poses a risk to public health because any sewage is so heavily diluted with rain and spring water.

A spokesman from the utilities company said: “We sympathise with customers affected by flooding, it is a frustrating and difficult experience. This January has been the wettest since records began, and the near-constant rainfall in the last four weeks has seen our sewer network overwhelmed by floodwater, rainwater and groundwater, causing it to overflow in some places.”

Following the flooding last year the residents set up the Drainage Improvement Group (DIG) which works with Wiltshire Council, Thames Water and the Environment Agency to manage the rising floods.

Graham Cook, a member of the DIG said: “In general terms I think this year is not as bad as last year but there are still a number of people and businesses suffering adverse affects so I do not want to diminish their problems.”