Multiple Meriden estate residents have voiced fears that their water may be contaminated after reports of diarrhoea and rashes.

Concerns were raised by Joanne Buckingham on social media asking if anyone had been having gastric problems – which attracted numerous responses.

Miss Buckingham told Watford Observer that her 83-year-old mother, who lives near York Way, has had severe diarrhoea since July.

She said: “The doctors gave her some antibiotics and told her to drink more water, but it was getting worse.

“She couldn’t leave the house. She couldn’t go to her grandson’s wedding.

“After using bottled water my mum seems to be improving, but she has also been given tablets to stop the diarrhoea.

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“I know of two other people who live close to my mother who have had diarrhoea for weeks.”

Miss Buckingham wondered if the Meriden estate regeneration, done by construction company Mulalley on behalf of Watford Community Housing, could be linked to the issue.

She said: “My mother has lived here for 60 years and never seen any rats until the building work started.

“Pest control came out and said they have been inundated with calls.

“They believe the build has disturbed the sewerage.

“I wondered if there is a link, although I can’t be sure.”

Michael Epstein, who lives in Ravenscroft, also reported having diarrhoea for nearly three weeks.

He said: “I thought maybe it’s one of those things.

“I can’t say for certain it’s the water, but I saw the Facebook post and I thought ‘that’s me too’.”

Several others aired concerns over the water – with two mothers claiming their children had developed spots after playing in paddling pools.

But an Affinity Water spokesperson said: “The supplying treatment works is sampled daily, and all results have been satisfactory.

“With respect to paddling pools, we have no control over their cleanliness or how water is stored in them and for how long so we can’t comment on any health issue relating to their use.”

A WCH spokesperson said it will support Affinity Water with any investigations and takes the wellbeing of the community seriously.  

Mulalley has been approached for a response.

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