AN UNDERPASS and town centre park will “become a lake” this winter if flood repairs aren’t carried out, desperate residents have warned.

The underpass from Basildon Town Centre to Gloucester Park, near the Sporting Village leisure centre, was several inches underwater last month due to a high levels of rainfall across the county.

The high levels of water caused a major sewage leak in Southend, and flooding across south Essex.

The scene at the underpass was a common sight last year, with some of the park also underwater for most of the winter.


Lorraine Borley, 46, from Basildon, has warned the problems will be repeated unless repairs are carried out.

She said: “Flooding is an issue across the town and the underpasses, but this one and Gloucester Park is the biggest issue.

“You just have to assume it’s going to be blocked over the winter, it puts people off.

“It gets so deep, you can’t even get through it with wellies on.

“A lot of running groups want to use it to get around easily, but they can’t.”

The Echo understands the flooding issues have been caused by dodgy drains and broken pumps nearby.

In leaked emails, which the Echo has seen, Essex Highways deemed the underpass and Gloucester Park to be a “non-priority.”

This sparked fury from residents and councillors, with no end in sight to the problems.

Former Labour councillor of the St Martins ward, Andrew Buxton, said: “The underpass links the town centre to the park, it’s really well-used.

“It’s a kick in the teeth to know it’s not being dealt with as a priority by Essex County Council.”

Mrs Borley added: “It can get up to your knees at the underpass, and what use is a park if you can’t walk through it because it is underwater?

“How can it not be a priority to fix?

“The park will be a lake, but apparently it’s not urgent.

“It will cost a lot of money, but it needs to be done.”

Essex County Council visited the site last night.