Islington residents 'distressed' by sewage flooding in new-build flats

A hallway covered in sewage water.

Residents at Canonbury Cross development near Highbury and Islington station have had to deal with flooding and damp issues over several months. - Credit: Resident preferred not to be named.

Islington residents living in a new-build development have been dealing with ongoing damp issues and sewage flooding in their flats. 

One woman living at Canonbury Cross, who preferred not to be named, said she and others residing on the development's basement level have been affected. 

She said she has "exhausted" all avenues, having reported the "distressing" issue to her housing association Notting Hill Genesis, and contacted Islington South and Finsbury MP Emily Thornberry, environmental health workers and the Citizens Advice Bureau. 

The resident told the Gazette: "I'm worried for the health and safety of my family as there are health conditions in my family, which include respiratory problems."

The flooding occurred several times in late 2019,  with water overflowing from the resident's shower basin, bath tub and toilets.

This added to rising damp issues and mould throughout the property, mainly in the children's bedrooms.

The woman said she contacted Notting Hill Genesis about the damp on "numerous occasions" since March 2020.

Surveyors and contractors were sent to "paint over the problem", she added: "We only realised the severity of the dampness in the property because we had hired a painter and decorator and he informed us how bad it was."

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Notting Hill Genesis apologised and said a blockage in sewage pipes on the estate, caused by debris, was obstructing equipment. 

A spokesperson said the blockage has been cleared and the waste system is working normally: "We have adapted the service and maintenance of the equipment on-site to ensure this doesn’t happen again."

They urged residents to follow Thames Water advice on how to prevent blockages and have sent written notice prohibiting the disposal of wet wipes and grease down toilets and sinks.

The landlord says those worst affected by the flooding have been offered temporary accommodation while issues are resolved. 

It added: "Unfortunately, none of the properties viewed so far have been deemed suitable but we are continuing to work with [residents] to seek alternative accommodation."