A TEST Valley councillor has hit out at a water company after raw sewage spewed onto a main road in Romsey at the weekend.

Cllr John Parker, who represents Romsey Tadburn on the borough council, has called for Southern Water to take action following the incident on Wincehster Road during Storm Dennis’s heavy rain.

He claims that there has been a “lack of progress” on upgrading the sewage system since Romsey was flooded in 2014, despite promises.

However, in response Southern Water claims at the time of the flood they had an "operational issue at Southampton Road wastewater pumping station”, which may have contributed to the incident.

Cllr Parker said: “The problem with the Winchester Road area is that it has an old Victorian style sewage system and when you get a lot of rain the sewers get overwhelmed by rainwater.

“Southern Water know about this because we had that problem in the 2014 floods and they have been talking about increasing the capacity since then, but getting them to make it a priority is difficult.

“I cannot see them taking action in the next two years and from what I have heard the pump station packed up at the weekend.”

He added: “As a member of the Romsey Flood Action Group, I am very frustrated about the lack of progress by Southern Water, as they do not seem to give it the attention local people feel it needs.

“When it floods like that it can force sewage into the road and into people’s cellars; it also makes it dangerous because it lifts the manholes in the middle of the road, so pedestrians can fall down them and cars could lose a wheel.

“Until they do something, if we have periods of heavy rainfall again the same thing is likely to happen because there is not the capacity in the pipe system.

“I will be bringing it up at the next action group meeting and I will ask Southern Water to come along and see what they are doing about it.”

A spokesperson from Southern Water said: “We’re sorry that during the storm this weekend, some sewage backed up the drains and onto Winchester Road.

“At the time of the flooding we had an operational issue at Southampton Road wastewater pumping station, Romsey, in which there was a power failure resulting in loss of pumping for a period of time, which may have been a contributing factor – but the root cause of the flooding in Winchester Road is still being investigated.

“We have been working with Hampshire County Council on a longer term project to identify a scheme to reduce flood risk in the area and have had joint meetings with the Environment Agency and HCC to share investigation findings.”

“It’s generally agreed to be a complex flooding mechanism in this area; where flood waters from a variety of drainage systems are flowing overland to the low point in the town. A flood reduction scheme has been proposed.”

The sewage spilled onto Winchester Road on Sunday, February 16.

A spokesperson from the Environment Agency told the Advertiser “nothing was reported” to them about the sewage, but they encourage people To report incidents, call: 0800 80 70 60.