BUSINESSES need to start hiring boats due to persistent flooding problems in a busy road, a despairing councillor has joked.

Haven Road, near Hythe Quay in Colchester, has been flooding for about 60 years.

A high tide in the nearby River Colne causes the road to be covered with inches of water, causing delays for drivers and even recently a breakdown.

The street flooded again on both Monday and Tuesday, as well as over the weekend.

Resident Sue Witheridge got caught in the queues of traffic on Monday, describing it as a “nightmare”.

She said: “It is the highest water level l have seen there.

“Long queues and no signage to warn drivers.”

Flooding in Haven Road, Colchester, on Monday. Picture: Sue Witheridge

Flooding in Haven Road, Colchester, on Monday. Picture: Sue Witheridge

Old Heath and Hythe Labour councillors Mike Lilley, Adam Fox and Lee Scordis have set up a petition calling on Colchester, Council, Anglian Water, the Environment Agency and Essex County Council to work together to sort the problem once and for all.

They’ve also written to those involved, as well as Colchester MP Will Quince, to demand a solution is found.

One business, Velvis cars, has already left the street due in part to flooding problems, and Mr Lilley warned more will follow.

He said: “This shouldn’t be about politics and who is to blame.

“We just want someone to stop the flooding. We just want answers. One business has already left and more will follow.

“These businesses will not survive and they’ll have to start hiring boats soon.”

He added: “Perhaps Essex Highways can loan them some canoes whilst it is sorted.”

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The Gazette contacted Essex Highways for a response to the issue.

Dangerous - flooding in Haven Road, Colchester, on Monday and (inset) councillor Mike Lilley. Main picture: Sue Witheridge

Dangerous - flooding in Haven Road, Colchester, on Monday. Picture: Sue Witheridge

It said there was no update from the beginning of April when a spokesman said: “Flooding is a recurring and complex issue in Haven Road. The outfall from the drainage system to the tidal river nearby is reportedly low in the wall, potentially affected by silting.

“That may be an issue for the Environment Agency, with Colchester Council owning the river wall and fishery owners are believed to control access rights.

“Essex Highways welcomes and looks forward to further discussions with all concerned parties as we try to identify a long-term solution together.”

Sign the petition at