Reader's Letter: Investigations into Alderley Road flooding cause absolute chaos

Well the thrirteenth inundation since last July is currently ongoing.

Allegedly investigations are being carried out by CEC Highways into why we have had all these floods since the by-pass was built; but there was not a soul around when I went for a paddle this morning.

They have put in place an utterly stupid traffic diversion which routes vehicles into Fulshaw Park South, which is a cul-de-sac with a Traffic Regulation Order forbidding vehicles from entering, except for access to properties. There have been possibly thousands of cars trying to find a way out of this nightmare, doing u-turns, reversing at high speed, going up dead ends and private driveways, blowing horns and generally getting cross; the only exit is via Fulshaw Park a narrow, unmade, Private Street, also with a Traffic Regulation Order. The traffic should really be diverted onto Knutsford Road at the Fulshaw Cross (King's Arms) and then onto Brook Lane.

I telephoned Cheshire East Highways on the Emergency number shown on the website... several choices and recorded voices and finally was told that they were open during office hours, Monday to Friday. Fabulous.

As I'm a Neighbourhood Watch co-ordinator for part of Fulshaw Park I telephoned 101 in an attemp to "summon a constable" this morning; I listened to 35 minutes of recorded voices before giving up; this afternoon I got through to a cop who actually knows the area and who said he would get on to Highways to put a sensible diversion in! In the good old days I had a direct number to Wilmslow Police station and could speak to someone who usually made things happen within minutes of the call.

I have attached a selection of photos from this and other floods; there are clues in the photos to where the water is coming from and going to; in my opinion the source seems to be the culvert into the Brook on Royal London land adjacent to the Alderley Road bridge. This pipe really should have a flap-valve to close it off when the level in the Brook is high. This water bubbles up via a manhole cover in the RL wood and the also the road gullies on Alderley Road. Evidently water is pumped into the Brook from tanks near the railway bridge over the bypass (anyone remember what a load of trouble that job was, contractor went bust and there were months of delays) the bypass flooded within weeks of being opened and, iirc, larger pumps and tanks had to be retro-fitted. That's great for keeping the bypass clear but... you know what I'm thinking!

The big question is: what will happen if Royal London build all their planned new empty offices and Hotel, plus massive tarmac car park on this land?

Reader's Letter


Here's what readers have had to say so far. Why not add your thoughts below.

Andy Brown
Sunday 23rd February 2020 at 3:41 pm
Only in Cheshire East can they divert a main road down a cul-de-sac.

Well worth the upcoming 3.99% increase in council tax.
Tony Haluradivth
Sunday 23rd February 2020 at 9:12 pm
Craig Browne if you are reading this can knuckles be rapped at Ringway Jacob on Monday . Can Messr's Traynor and Ross of CEC Highways be ordered down there in their wellies. The proverbially stupid led by donkeys (and we are paying for this idiocy). The letter above explains it all beautifully. Lack of maintenance and a great opportunity to use the "catch all" AGW as an excuse not to do anything. Crazy.. to allow any development on this site . Even man made global warming number 1 fan Prince Charles has had a pop at the mass badly planned developments in Wales exacerbating the effects of flooding. And if local planners still think developing land at the end of Heyes Lane near Jenny Hayes is a great idea. Look again as they are our lovely local Lake District at the moment .
Duncan Herald
Monday 24th February 2020 at 9:04 am
Why 'blame' 'Ringway Jacob'?
If it is not Cheshire East's 'fault', then why did we bother with elections?
Tony Haluradivth
Monday 24th February 2020 at 9:47 am
Ringway Jacob have the contract from CEC and it was their team who went out and devised that ridiculous diversion. Have you been down it yet Duncan ? A tiny potholed narrow lane (& they are sending HGV's along there too). They are ALL to blame and as Pete and others say still no attempt at clearing silt and debris from the gullies and drains.
Pete Taylor
Monday 24th February 2020 at 12:28 pm
Duncan Herald, surely you haven't forgotten this: and this:

I don't know what a contracts lawyer would make of the tendering process but to give a fifteen year extension to a company, who were reportedly being accused of failing to fulfil their obligations already, is something of a puzzle. No wonder there was a change of Councillor from Conservative to Independent at the last election!

As for the tiny potholed narrow lane referred to by Tony Haluradivith; it is not a Public Highway, it is a Private Street, there is a Traffic Regulation Order in place forbidding vehicles except for access to properties. How do I know this? I live there.
Duncan Herald
Tuesday 25th February 2020 at 9:17 am
Hi Tony,
Yup I have been on the scenic tour aka diversion. Makes 'our' potholed roads almost acceptable!
I don't accept that 'They are ALL to blame': blame the organ grinder, not the monkey?
This is not to excuse R.J. of course!

Hi Pete,
There was indeed a change from mostly Conservative to a number of Independent Councillors; has that improved things? or is it 'same old, same old'
If you read the R.J. web site, it includes 'the majority of our people have previously worked in local government'. A proud boast indeed?
David Smith
Tuesday 25th February 2020 at 9:21 pm
Looking into this Ringway Jacob outfit I see they have a Highway Design Engineer called Natale Maltese. His qualifications and experience can be seen on his Linkedin entry at the following link:
Looking at his experience I would be interested to know how he came to be a Highway Design Engineer after working for several years as a Deck Officer on a ship! Not many highways on those I would think.
There's no mention of any time spent gaining a recognised academic qualification in Highwway Engineering - perhaps you don't need one or there aren't any - which might explain the problems we are having on the roads of Cheshire East and Wilmslow in particular. Can anyone put my mind at rest and suggest why he is qualified to work for US at Ringway Jacob and benefit from our council tax that Cheshire East sees fit to hand over. I wonder what he and his fellow "Highway Engineers" get paid?
Yvonne Bentley
Wednesday 26th February 2020 at 1:23 pm
David, do we know that Natale Maltese has any involvement in this issue or Have you arbitrarily chosen to insult him has an employee of Ringway Jacob?
Tony Haluradivth
Wednesday 26th February 2020 at 7:09 pm
Ringway Jacob must be doing it on the "cheep cheep cheep..." I notice that some of our more senior elected representatives are keeping strangely quiet about this mess. Highway's statement on Monday saying there was naught' wrong with diversion signs just demonstrates their total disdain for us.
James MacDonald
Wednesday 26th February 2020 at 8:29 pm
Pete is 100% correct. I also live in the area and there was a constant stream of vehicles on the Sunday, particularly in the afternoon. Some were travelling at speed. An apology from whoever set the signs would be a basic start.
David Smith
Monday 2nd March 2020 at 12:49 pm
Yvonne Bentley:
Hello Yvonne. It is not my intention to insult anyone. By means of discussion, I was looking at the minutes of various council meetings and in one of them - ‘The minutes of the Ordinary Meeting of Disley Parish Council for 14th November 2019’, I noticed on page 2 a reference to a Mr Natale Maltese of CHESHIRE EAST HIGHWAYS who was involved in discussions with councillors on matters highways. Wondering what responsibilities he might have on Cheshire East Highways I couldn’t find any reference to him on the CEC website so Googled his name to see what came up. Being an uncommon name there appeared several links - the first of which is his Linkedin page where he describes himself as a ‘HIGHWAYS ENGINEER WITH RINGWAY JACOBS’. He states under EXPERIENCE prior to Ringway Jacobs that he was a DECK OFFICER on two ships from December 2007 until September 2013 when he joined Ringway Jacobs. He does not mention any other qualifications at all and certainly nothing to do with Highways Engineering. As I understand it, Linkedin is a sort of Internet CV. So if you wanted someone to offer you a job then it would be here that you laid out ALL your qualifications and experience starting with milk monitor in junior school [for the younger readers, a milk monitor dates back to the days when schools daily gave out free milk to all children]. I find it hard to believe that he has no qualifications that might be useful to being a highways engineer with Ringway Jacobs (RJ) and as he hasn’t declared any am inclined to believe that he has none. Perhaps he has gained qualifications [such as ONC/HND] since joining RJ in 2013 but makes no mention of anything
By means of comparison check the link
for an assistant engineer at Ringway Jacobs and see the details of his experience and qualifications which are related to highways and engineering. Or this chap who has a long list of connections to Engineering and Highways. Or this engineer
I also point out that the minutes of the Disley Parish Council meeting state that he is representing Cheshire East Highways and that his Linkedin page states he works for Ringway Jacobs without any mention of a connection to Cheshire East Council. So what exactly is his role at Cheshire East and how can he be employed by both CEC & Ringway Jacobs? Is there a conflict of interest? Does he receive two salaries?
Is he involved in other areas of our local Highways Engineering, some of which have been somewhat contentious - such as flooding and parking? I am affected by the parking in the cycle lanes along Manchester Road and would like to know if he is involved in reaching a viable solution to this mess that has been going on for far too long. If so, might someone who would publicly appear to be better qualified perhaps be better at solving some of these very serious issues that have been annoying us for so long and with no apparent solution in sight?
Does that answer your question Yvonne and please reply with your thoughts?
Yvonne Bentley
Monday 2nd March 2020 at 7:17 pm
So briefly, no there is no evidence that he has any involvement in the issue being discussed.
And yes, you arbitrarily chose him as an employee of Ringway Jacobs. You say you are not insulting anyone but your response maintains the same pejorative tone as your original comment
Duncan Herald
Wednesday 4th March 2020 at 5:00 pm
In the meantime, does anyone know whether an Inspection has been re=arranged?
Be nice to hear from someone at Cheshire East ?