Christmas Day horror in Bridgetown

By Dan Walsh in Bridgetown

It was heartbreaking to walk through the village of Bridgetown and observe people’s possessions either sitting outside their homes or piled high on lorry-sized skips awaiting collection having been devastated by the torrential Christmas Day rainfall that created flooding across large parts of Co. Wexford.

The clean-up has days to go, the horror inflected on the local population will be a talking point for generations and fears for the future are evident. “I would be afraid of this happening again,” said one elderly resident, and another asked; “Could it be possible that this is the beginning of things to come at regular intervals?”

And this was two days after the worst weather event to hit south Wexford in living memory. Cllr Jim Codd said; “The people are devastated here. Their Christmas ruined. People trapped in submerged car parks.

In our attached audio clip, Cllr Codd explains the scenario that descended on Bridgetown and other areas in south Wexford before taking me to the Big Bridge of Ballaburn where we gazed at a waterlogged landscape as far as the eye could see in all directions.

AUDIO ADDITION; CLLR JIM CODD tells DAN WALSH about severe flooding in the Bridgetown district and outlines what happens next?
Local resident Ollie Daly with Cllr Jim Codd and his children, Moira and Siobhán, at the clean-up in Bridgetown village today.

Hundreds of low-lying acres of land are covered by water with the pumping station on the canal unable to handle the volume of water. Winter crops are already devastated.

Local resident Leslie Bates told that his 86 years old mother never remembers such flooding and devastation in her lifetime. “We have got bits of flooding over the years but never anything like this,” he added.

AUDIO ADDITION; Local resident LESLIE BATES talks to DAN WALSH about flooding on the low-lying landscape of south Wexford today.
Leslie Bates and Cllr Jim Codd reflect on hundreds of acres of land flooded in south Wexford.

Cllr Codd is calling for better flood defences for Bridgetown, Duncormick and Wellingtonridge and he is urging TDs for Wexford to release funds to make these areas safe. “Substantial investment is required for drainage,” he concluded.   

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