Not the sweet smell of Spring

Ew - what’s that pong? Residents and visitors to Egerton Park and surrounding streets complained this week of a most unpleasant smell.

It was especially offensive on Monday when locals responded on Facebook concerning the stench which some thought built up over weeks - one even claimed she caught a whiff from as far as Devonshire Road.

Cathryn Melbert commented: “The smell has been building up from the Polgrove for weeks I think - I noticed it vaguely a while ago.”

Nathan Tate said: “I was wondering what the horrible smell in Egerton park area today was.”

Barry Line posted: “The smell is sewer gas, a complex mixture of toxic and non-toxic gases produced and collected in sewage systems by the decomposition of organic household or industrial wastes.” He added: “It seems to be coming from the storm drain thing in The Polegrove. Southern Water staff were working on it last week and it seems to have got worse since. The stench was quite repulsive in The Polegrove this morning when I was walking the dogs.”

A Southern Water press officer told the Observer: “Our storage tank in the Polegrove sports ground, near Brockley Road, stores stormwater during heavy rain, to prevent flooding in the area.

“We have been carrying out some repairs in the storm tank, which, regrettably, caused some unpleasant smells in the area on Tuesday and we apologise for this.”

She said on Wednesday that the problem should already have improved and would continue to do so.