A PENSIONER is concerned his house will ‘sink’ after discovering a disused and seemingly blocked drain buried in his front garden.

Melvin Gibbons, 69, of Newland Avenue, Cudworth, has lived in his property for nine years and noticed that when there was torrential rain, his garden would become heavily saturated.

Over the last two years Melvin has watched his garden become more and more saturated, and more recently, flood. He decided to investigate what was causing the build up of water in his garden.

“There was one occasion where there was almost three feet of water in my garden,” said Melvin.

“Water was bubbling up and running onto the path so I began digging and before long I found a manhole which was overflowing with water.”

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Melvin contacted Barnsley Council who supplied Melvin with dye to test where the water would come out that colour and he also contacted Yorkshire Water who came and pumped the drain, recovering a brick and a spade.

Melvin said: “The drain is full of water and I’ve tried to clear some of it myself it’s full of black slurry and silt. The manhole cover is extremely heavy for me to carry but over the years the pressure of the water has pushed the lid off. There is nowhere for the water to go and when the grass is over saturated it floods.

“The council are aware of the situation and I’ve heard nothing from them since they supplied the dye and when Yorkshire Water came to investigate they emptied the drain and said a bigger pump was needed to complete the job but I’ve heard nothing since.

“The estate is relatively new. It was built I believe in 2009 by Taylor Wimpy and looking at the original plans my house was built on top of a former road.

“The drain isn’t connected to any other drains on the estate so the water has nowhere to go.

“I’m concerned that if the issue isn’t resolved it will damage the foundations of my house. I don’t even know if water has already began seeping under the footings of my house. I’m worried my house could sink.”

A spokesman from Yorkshire Water said: “We have been to the customer’s property on a number of occasions to try and fix the issue. We have cleared out all of the assets which belong to us but unfortunately have yet to determine who owns an unmapped asset which could be the source of the problem.

“We cleared this for the customer at the time as we found silt and stones in it. We will continue to do all we can to help him and identity the owner of the asset as soon as possible.”

A spokesman from Barnsley Council said: “We are aware of this issue and the senior drainage engineer has been out twice and has spoken to Mr Gibbons. We are currently exploring a number of solutions.”