RESIDENTS of flooded homes in Dinas Powys are calling for answers after they say they were left stranded for hours after their homes were flooded before Christmas.

More than one hundred homes were flooded in the village, with Cardiff Road at Eastbrook in Dinas engulfed by water on December 23, as well as Sunncroft Lane, Millbrook Road, St Lythans Close, Murch Road and Greenfield Avenue.

Residents of 29 homes which were particularly wrecked by floodwater throughout the evening have now written to the Vale council and Natural Resources Wales in a bid to find answers.

In the letter they say they felt “let down by various authorities”.

“No help was provided apart from the fire service, the council was directing residents to Barry to get sandbags – but the roads were flooded and gridlocked, and residents were dealing with the immediate flood warning alert.”

Penarth Times: Dinas Community Council questioned whether the drains had been properly cleared prior to the floodingDinas Community Council questioned whether the drains had been properly cleared prior to the flooding

Concerns have also been raised about drains not being maintained properly for "at least a year", which residents believe contributed to the amount of floodwater.

Many residents have now moved upstairs in their homes , while others have been instructed they’ll need to vacate their properties – some for up to 12 months – while repair and safety works take place.

Resident and councillor Stephen Griffiths, who lives on Greenfield Avenue and whose home was also flooded – praised the community for its “fantastic spirit” after more than £7,000 was raised to help those affected.

Recounting the day of December 23, he said: “It was raining pretty heavily but didn’t seem anything out of the ordinary.

“I certainly didn’t expect my house to flood. I’ve been here for eight years and it’s never happened before.

“It was at 4pm when I realised the drains were backing up – not long later the water started coming in and within minutes it was up past our ankles.”

Mr Griffiths has been able to return to his home – but he believes it will be months before he’s back to normal.

“Christmas wasn’t a great time that’s for sure. We just spent it cleaning and drying the place out. A lot of work needs doing.”

Penarth Times: Stephen Griffiths' home on December 23Stephen Griffiths' home on December 23

Cllr Chris Franks said the Vale council and Natural Resources Wales “went missing” on the day and the response up to now – he says – has been abject.

Dinas Powys Community Council will begin their own inquiry into how so many homes were flooded, and said they will be meeting virtually with Natural Resources Wales this week.

“We don’t believe the stream has been dredged for a long time, which could have added to the levels of floodwater,” Cllr Franks said. “No sandbags were delivered to residents, drains are yet to be unblocked even though complaints have been made, and street lights are still not working since the flooding.”

Tim England, operations manager for flood and water management for Natural Resources Wales said: “Our thoughts are with those affected by the flooding over the Christmas period at the end of what was a year of exceptional weather events. 

“Several days of intense heavy rainfall in the lead up to Christmas left ground saturated, drainage systems overwhelmed and caused several rivers to overtop. 

“We are now working with local authority partners to assess the sources of flooding at the locations affected across south Wales, to investigate what happened and to identify any steps that can be taken to reduce the likelihood of it happening again.

“Once all the information is gathered, we will be in a better position to inform those affected of what actions are possible.”

A Vale of Glamorgan Council spokesperson said: “The Council would firstly wish to pass on its sympathy to those residents affected.

“This excessive rainfall resulted in many drain gullies becoming partially or fully blocked with silt and debris. Also a large number were unable to disperse flood water as they feed into rivers and watercourses that were themselves overflowing.

Penarth Times: The community coming together to help residents at Sunnycroft Lane. Picture: Sally WalshThe community coming together to help residents at Sunnycroft Lane. Picture: Sally Walsh

“The council routinely cleans gullies, and this last took place on December 15, just over a week before the heavy rainfall arrived. We are now allocating extra resources to inspect and where necessary cleanse all highway drainage in areas affected by flooding. There will also be an investigation into the flooding, carried out in partnership with Natural Resources Wales and Dwr Cymru.

“To help support residents affected by flooding, the council provided over 1300 sandbags and around 40 full-sized builders skips to help dispose of water-damaged furniture, floor coverings and other household items. We also provided regular updates on the situation through social media and the council website.

“The council routinely repairs faulty streetlights, whether they have been damaged by flooding or any other cause. An assessment of damage caused by flooding has also now been carried out and further repairs will take place shortly.

“Reports of any faulty streetlights should be made to the council’s contact centre so appropriate action can be taken.”