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Huge hole in the ground opens up on quiet Maidstone estate

An engineer at stands by the 30-foot deep hole in Maidstone
An engineer at stands by the 30-foot deep hole in Maidstone

by Mary Graham

A collapsed sewer led to a 30-foot deep hole opening up on the Vinters Park Estate in Maidstone.

The hole on the Vinters Park Estate in Maidstone
The hole on the Vinters Park Estate in Maidstone

Residents woke on on Thursday morning stunned to find the ground had literally opened up in front of them on a grass verge in Challock Walk.

Anyone brave enough to peer into it would have seen layers of mud, muddy water and raw sewage at the bottom of the hole.

Fortunately it did not happen during the day, when people could have been walking along the grass verge, which is halfway between two rows of houses.

Engineers who were at the scene Thursday afternoon believe the sewer, which runs underneath the length of the grass verge, could have collapsed and taken the ground with it.

EDF Energy sent a contractor to the scene as the collapse caused a power cable to sever and begin sparking. Kent County Council had also sent their engineers to the scene.

Scott Howes, of Challock Walk, said: "It is really fortunate no-one was injured, but it is very dangerous. You can see around three to four metres down, through the topsoil and then lots of muddy water."

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