RESIDENTS fear 'fundamentally flawed' drainage plans on a 160-home site planned for their village could lead to flooding.

A report by civil engineer, Roger Peston, argues the redesigned attenuation pond for the development off Mount Owen Road in Bampton, near Witney, is a 'safety hazard'.

Several villagers have backed the Bampton-based drainage expert's report, published last month, while Oxfordshire County Council has also expressed concern.

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Dr Peston says the attenuation pond, which is meant to manage stormwater and helps prevent downstream flooding, has a 'fundamental design flaw' and is 'unlikely' to remove the risk of surface water flooding.

The document adds: “The foul sewerage system has been designed without taking into account the site characteristics, is a poor design with potential for troublesome and expensive operation.”

It continues: “This design has been produced to obtain a solution which apparently works for the lowest possible cost to the developer without any consideration to the future maintenance or operating costs.”

The plans were granted outline planning permission in 2016, with housebuilder Taylor Wimpey submitting further details in a reserved matters application in March.

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The current drainage proposals are showing only one smaller, 3.5m deep pond, compared to two large shallow 1m deep ponds and one further shallow pond on the outline plans.

Dr Peston's report claims this is a 'safety hazard' when located about 15 metres from housing, while other 'design flaws' include the top water level and proposed ground levels being too low.

It adds: "If the design flaws are not corrected then there remains a significant risk of some properties flooding."

As the lead local flood authority, the county council has objected to the application as it says the drainage proposals do not line up with the original plans or local and national standards.

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Hundreds of villagers were affected by the floods of July 2007 and Trevor Milne-Day, secretary of the society for the protection of Bampton, revealed it was an important topic for residents.

He said: “Flooding is particularly sensitive in Bampton because dozens of houses were flooded in 2007.

“After the consultation they submitted exactly the same plans. They didn’t take anybody’s views into account.”

The Bampton resident added: “I can point to places where the quality is much higher, like the houses being built on the edge of Aston. There’s nothing that screams this is a Cotswold estate.”

Taylor Wimpey's drainage proposals were prepared in line with the Sewers for Adoption 7th Edition, which provides guidance on the construction of sewers.

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The housebuilder added surface water drainage issues would be addressed and more details on drainage would be available when detailed designs were agreed.

A spokesperson said plans were 'carefully considered' after consultation with the public and local authorities.

They added: "Our drainage proposals for the site have been prepared in accordance with national guidelines and we are in continued discussion with both West Oxfordshire District Council and Oxfordshire County Council to ensure that a robust drainage strategy is in place.

“The design of the homes we have proposed is in line with the outline planning permission that has already been granted.

"Designs have been influenced by local surroundings and many of the homes will be constructed in stone in keeping with the local area.”