Mystery of ‘putrid stench’ at the ‘Cash

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Residents in Derrymacash are kicking up a stink about a dreadful odour which has pervaded the village and surrounding area.

For weeks people living in the area have been disgusted with the vile stench which has been affecting their daily lives. However its source remains a mystery.

One mother described it like the smell of rotting fish.

“The smell is putrid,” she told the MAIL. “You can’t hang your washing out. You can’t open your windows,” she said.

“You’re covering your nose and mouth when you go outside.”

And she said there is no escape from it. “It depends which way the wind is blowing as to who is subjected to it. So if it’s not at the house, you drive into it, or it’s there when you lift the kids from school, or bring them training.

“It seems to cover the full Derrymacash area from Ballynery to Raughlan Aghacommon embankment and up into the village,” she said.

Initial thoughts were that the smell was coming from the massive Ballynacor Sewage Treatment Works but NI Water said the smell is not coming from there.

The Derrymacash mum said she has also contacted the council’s environmental health team who visited her home. “I had to ring them when I smelt the smell and they would then follow it.

“The smell doesn’t go as far down as Derrytrasna so it has to be either the sewage works or something that the farmers are spreading on the fields.

She said she had complained to the NI Environment Agency but had no response.

A DOE spokesperson said: “NIEA has received complaints relating to a ‘fishy’ smell in the general area of Ballynacor WWTW. The complaints are currently being investigated.”

A spokesperson for NI Water said: “NI Water’s works operator at Ballynacor WWTW, Glen Water Ltd, was made aware of odour complaints on 7 May from residents of the near-by Coleman Drive / Island Grove area. The site was visited by NI Environment Agency officials on 11 May as part of their investigations into complaints they also received. Whilst detecting odours in the Coleman Drive area, NIEA officials were unable to identify on site the same odours at the Ballynacor facilities. The works operator has reviewed the performance of the odour control assets of both the WWTW and the adjacent Ballynacor Lagoon remediation works, and all systems and readings have been, and continue to be, within set standards.” NI Water said it will continue to monitor works performance closely and ‘will act upon any issues’.