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Demand for Fortrose flood answers

By Val Sweeney

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FRUSTRATED residents in a Black Isle village are calling for action to tackle repeated flooding caused by blocked drains.

The problem, which has been going on for several years, particularly affects Academy Street in Fortrose, but is also an issue elsewhere in the village according to community representatives.

The Fortrose and Rosemarkie Community Council which has raised the issue several times with Highland Council has now written to the local authority again to demand answers.

Members want to know why the drains have not been cleared properly and when the problems that have been clearly identified will be addressed.

They include community councillor Iain Brown who lives in Academy Street and regularly sees the problems first-hand after rainfall.

In a recent incident, the water threatened to overflow into a property in his street.

Mr Brown is baffled as to why the council has not been able to resolve the problem.

“Not being a drain engineer, I have no idea why,” he said.

“But they repeatedly come back and apparently cure it, but it doesn’t last.

“If things are not draining away, I assume the only reason is that there is a blockage.

“Blocked drains happen, but if it is fixed it should not happen very soon again thereafter.

“But that isn’t the case here.

“It must be costing cash-strapped Highland Council a lot of money to repeatedly do the same job – and to do it ineffectively.”

In its letter to Highland Council the community council states that although “cursory attempts” have been made by council staff to clear the drains over the years, the situation had not substantially changed.

It also maintains the latest flooding problem in Academy Street had been reported this time last year.

It asks why the drains have not been cleared properly in the intervening period and when the issue will be addressed both in Academy Street and more widely in the area.

A spokeswoman for Highland Council confirmed the letter had been received.

“It has been logged and will be treated as a road maintenance issue by the relevant services,” she said.

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