A WATER firm which recorded a £263m profit last year has been accused by a leading councillor of “failing residents in a big way” as numerous residents are continuing to suffer from sewage backing up into homes

North Yorkshire County Council’s deputy leader Councillor Gareth Dadd’s condemnation of Yorkshire Water comes just over a year after its then chief executive described issues the firm faced as “a matter of grave concern” after being confronted with a litany of residents’ grievances by North Yorkshire council leaders.

The latest criticism of the utility company follows residents of seven homes in Kingfisher Way in Carlton Miniott, near Thirsk, pleading with the firm to stop sewage backing up into their homes.

One of the residents, Sarah Cobb, said her family had suffered foul liquids passing her boiler and entering an upstairs bath every time there was heavy rain since moving there in May 2016.

She said: “We’ve got children in these houses and due to the sewage they can’t even have a bath. It only happens when it rains. The boiler starts banging and it sounds like it’s going to explode.”

Mrs Cobb said she had raised the issue with housebuilder Taylor Wimpey, who told her the buildings had passed the regulations tests, and Yorkshire Water only ever arrived to check the issue when it had stopped raining. She said: “Nobody wants to know”.

A Yorkshire Water spokesman said: “We certainly sympathise with the residents in Carlton Miniott and can understand their frustration. The sewers are currently private and have not been adopted by us. We have been working with the developer and asked them to carry out remedial work to the sewer before that process begins.”

A spokeswoman for Taylor Wimpey North Yorkshire said it was sorry to hear residents are experiencing problems with drainage, but pointed towards Yorkshire Water to resolve the issue.

She said: “A small number of customers contacted us regarding sewage ingress in August, and we therefore arranged for the drains to be surveyed in order to ascertain the root cause of the issue. The survey found that all drainage at the development had been laid to industry standards and was defect free.

“Following a period of heavy rainfall in September, additional investigations by Yorkshire Water found that a build-up of silt had blocked the main sewer. This was subsequently cleared by the water board. We would urge residents experiencing problems to contact the water board, who will be able to provide further assistance, as the main sewer to which this relates is outside the development boundary and is owned and maintained by Yorkshire Water.”

However, Cllr Dadd, who represents Thirsk, said the firm’s claims that the sewers had not been adopted ignored that the issues stemmed from the mains sewers.

He said despite “superb efforts” by Hambleton District Council’s environmental health department, as well as by residents and himself to resolve the issue, young families were continuing to live in intolerable conditions.

He said: “Yorkshire Water have just given us the round-around. As councillors we are asked to approve more housing, and there is an obvious need, but without the commitment to provide up to standard utilities, I find that difficult.

“Nobody should have to put up with what the residents of Kingfisher Way have done for years now.

“The issue that needs resolving is that sewage is backing up from Yorkshire Water’s main infrastructure. They are failing the residents of Thirsk in a big way.”