THE Eastbourne Miniature Steam Railway has once again been affected by flooding.

The tourist business at EMSR, owned and operated by the Wadey family, is based in Eastbourne Park, Lottbridge Drove, and at permanent risk from flood water.

The railway is dependent on a single pump, operated by the Environment Agency, on the Lottbridge Sewer, for its floor prevention.

But the vital pump has been out of action for almost a year without any sign of repair.

As a result the railway has been flooded on numerous occasions, affecting its operation.

Eastbourne Councillor Robert Smart has involved Pevensey & Cuckmere Water Levels Management Limited (PCWLML), where he is a director, to arrange the necessary assistance.

“An additional temporary pump has been delivered from its base in Norfolk by the Water Levels Management, who have also offered assistance in repairing or replacing the out-of-action pump”, explained Cllr Smart the Conservative Group Leader at Eastbourne Borough Council .

“It is quite outrageous that the Environment Agency made no progress in repairing the pump for almost a year.

“I am relieved that they have now agreed to work with others to resolve the issue although this is disappointingly similar to the de-shingling debacle last year at the mouth of the Cuckmere River.”

Mike Wadey, owner of the EMSR, welcomed the news: “This is a huge step forward from what I was told by the statutory agency, that nothing would be done about Lottbridge Pump

“Subject to Covid restrictions and flooding, we are hoping to open our summer season on 27th March.”