RESIDENTS in Marston were disgusted to find sewage seep into their gardens for a fourth time this year.

It took barely an hour-and-a-half for Declan Donovan’s garden to be completely flooded with waste water after torrential rain at the weekend.

The 75-year-old had to leave for a week-long trip to Ireland yesterday, with sewage deposits still in his back garden.

He said: “It is an inconvenience.

“This is the fourth time since Christmas. Thames Water came to clean up the garden on Saturday.

“They tried to clean it up as best as they could, but there is still a little bit of sewage there.”

The Oxford Times:

The flooded garden

Mr Donovan, who worked in maintenance at Oxford University’s Clarendon building, was alerted to the flooding at 4.30pm on Friday.

He claims it is the worst flooding he and his wife Valerie have seen in their 44 years living at their home in Croft Road.

Neighbour Fred Turner was outraged at the mess.

Mr Turner, 83, who lives in Old Marston Road, said: “It never used to happen. It is a nuisance and is getting a little bit worrying now.

“The sewage came all the way at once.”

Mr Turner has called out Thames Water engineers four times to his property – on January 4, February 2, February 11 and last Friday.

Independent city councillor for Marston Mick Haines said: “The smell was horrendous. Every time the rain comes, these same people seem to get it.

“I don’t want to see a single house built until this is sorted out. I would like to see the infrastructure go in first at the Barton housing development.

“Marston has flooded and raw sewage is awful. The smell was terrible and not only that it smells in other areas as well.

“To have raw sewage in your garden is not acceptable. It is a health hazard.”

Thames Water spokeswoman Sarah Sharpe said: “After the wettest winter on record ground water levels remain exceptionally high.

“Unfortunately, this means that even a few hours’ worth of heavy rainfall can lead to levels in our sewers becoming so high that waste water, heavily diluted with rain-water, overspills from manholes.

“We sympathise with customers affected by sewer flooding and we made sure we cleaned up the gardens as quickly as we could.”