Maddiston trench is ‘accident waiting to happen’

The trench area near Glendevon Drive in Maddiston can fill up with as much as 18 feet of water when it rains. Picture: Alan Murray (123841G)

The trench area near Glendevon Drive in Maddiston can fill up with as much as 18 feet of water when it rains. Picture: Alan Murray (123841G)

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Children’s lives are being put at risk by lack of action over a dangerous trench, community councillors have claimed.

They say it is too easy for youngsters to get access to the ditch, which regularly fills with floodwater, putting them at risk when they play nearby and when it freezes over.

Maddiston Community Council has voiced its concern about the area, behind Glendevon Drive in the village, for three years and wants it filled in. They say water can be as much as 18 feet deep.

The land is owned by a company called Greenbelt which regenerates and maintains green space for the benefit of communities. But the company says a development by Barratt Homes caused an “adverse impact” and the flooding.

Ashley Ainslie, who lives in Glendevon Drive, said: “It is an accident waiting to happen. There is a huge risk of children drowning. The fence which has been put up is 
totally inadequate.”

John Wotherspoon of the community council said they had been told by a council officer it could cost up to £150,000 to drain and fill the trench in.

Mr Wotherspoon said: “The community council has written to Barratt and Greenbelt about our concerns and to organise a meeting, but obviously this has not happened. The problem needs resolved.”

Falkirk Council said it is doing what it can to find a solution but does not have 
powers to force action.

A Greenbelt spokesman said it regularly inspects the area and is seeking a resolution. He added: “Greenbelt shares the concerns of residents. Unfortunately, the developer has yet to engage, either with Greenbelt or the council.”

Barratt Homes did not respond to requests for a comment.

Greenbelt said the problem has been caused by the construction of high wall gabion defences.

The company said its teams carry out regular safety inspections.

Maddiston Community Council said residents regularly raise the problem at its monthly meetings.

Falkirk Council said it has spoken with all the relevant land owners in an attempt to come up with a solution, but this process is “proving difficult”.