Motorists struggled through severe flooding on the national road network which had a knock-on effect in Abingdon.

Drivers experienced delays up to 25 minutes on the A34 southbound between Abingdon and Marcham Interchange, as one lane was closed for approximately five hours due to flooding on Monday morning (November 13).

A police vehicle was present to redirect traffic and cones were placed to separate off the flooded lane.

READ MORE: Brand new Victorian Christmas market coming to this town

Nathan Ley, county councillor for Abingdon North and cabinet member for public health, inequalities and community safety, said: “I hope that National Highways can sort out this flooding on the A34 as soon as possible.

“When the A34 snarls up, residents of Abingdon have to suffer the consequences of displaced traffic using the same local roads as everyone else, and this morning is no different."

Some motorists caught in the delays were baffled.

John Hyland said: “This is the second time the A34 has been flooded like this in the last couple of months.

“It hasn’t happened in my 30 previous years of living in Abingdon. Why now? What’s changed and who agreed the planning and due diligence for it?”

A second motorist, Steve Evans, owner of The Sprue Shop in Oxford, said: “It never used to flood. I wonder what has changed over the last year or so.”

Dr Ley added: “Sadly, this kind of flooding event is becoming ever more frequent due to climate change. We need big, bold solutions.”

Councillor Pete Sudbury, deputy leader of Oxfordshire County Council and cabinet member for climate change and environment, said: “Predictions of the impact of climate change are that we will see more rain in winter and less in summer.

“The surface of the Atlantic has been at record temperatures this year, and warmer water evaporates more rapidly, so the clouds coming in from the West or South contain more water, which falls as more frequent, persistent and much heavier rain.

“Not only will this result in the road surface being flooded more often, as drainage is overwhelmed, we'd also expect more erosion and landslides on embankments and we're seeing worse damage to road surfaces as water seeps through defects in the tarmac and softens or washes away the foundations, creating potholes or sinkholes.

“If the roads were in good repair, this would matter less, but over a decade of inadequate funding for maintenance means it doesn't take much extra to wreck the road surface.”

A National Highways spokesperson said: “Safety is our top priority at National Highways and we regularly monitor the safety of all our roads in the region.

"The south east has experienced some particularly heavy periods of rain over the last few days which left the ground unable to drain the water quickly.

"Specialist contractors have been on scene to get the water cleared. We urge people to drive to the conditions; in heavy rain drivers should slow down and keep a greater distance between their vehicle and the one in front."


Read more from this author

This story was written by Matthew Norman, he joined the team in 2022 as a Facebook community reporter.

Matthew covers Bicester and focuses on finding stories from diverse communities.

Get in touch with him by emailing:

Follow him on Twitter: @OxMailMattN1