Mervyn Dixon surveys the water in the front yard of his South Grafton home.
Mervyn Dixon surveys the water in the front yard of his South Grafton home.

Mervyn?s nine-year battle for answers

By JULIA ILES

MERVYN Dixon didn't plan on having a swimming pool, but after the rain last Friday he had enough water in his backyard to fill one.

His Vere Street home in South Grafton was awash with deep mud and puddled ground, turning his sizeable vegetable garden into a mushy mess.

"Whenever it rains heavily this happens and it has been like this on and off for many years," he said, walking barefoot in the sludge.

"If you look under the house you can see how high the ground soil is, it's been pushed from the garden and swept under the house."

Certainly the damp will do no favours for his wooden house stilts.

Mr Dixon's house backs onto the South Grafton Infants School, which also was partly underwater, as was the adjacent kindergarten grounds.

The problem stemmed from an overflowing drain in Kelly Street.

"It gets all blocked up, one time I tried to unblock it by myself and got stuck in it for 10-15 minutes before my nephew found me," Mr Dixon said.

"I've written to the council and tried to contact them but they haven't done anything."

Mr Dixon is in possession of a letter dating back to 1997 from the then Grafton City Council, which advised him that 'the inlet near the pre-school would be investigated for better flow characteristics' and that he would be 'advised of the investigation of the catchment area'.

But Mr Dixon, who has lived at the premises for 55 years, has waited nine years for any action to be taken.

"I've called them a number of times, but they don't seem to want to do anything about it," he said.

"They always promise they will look into it but nothing seems to happen, I don't know what to do."

The Daily Examiner contacted council about the matter, but our call was not returned.



Donation of $1460 just the start for school's drought help

Donation of $1460 just the start for school's drought help

A Clarence Valley school has dug incredibly deep to help farmers.

Water-saving fix axed as drought reached crisis point

premium_icon Water-saving fix axed as drought reached crisis point

A replacement conservation program is currently “being designed”

Firefighters are once again protecting homes

Firefighters are once again protecting homes

The fire had burnt 255 hectares before jumping road

Local Partners