Eton College pupils forced to stay away at start of term as flooding blocks sewers

Thames Water apologises to staff and pupils as college forced to bring back remote learning

Jane Dalton
Wednesday 10 January 2024 14:56 GMT
Drone Footage Of Severe Flooding In Tewkesbury, UK

Eton College has been forced to keep pupils away at the start of term because the lavatories have backed up following flooding.

Sewers in the centre of the town in Berkshire won’t cope with the arrival of nearly 1,350 boys to Boris Johnson’s old school, Thames Water has warned.

Pupils had been due to return after Christmas on Tuesday but the sewerage system around the Berkshire town is overloaded.

Flooding near Eton in Berkshire (Getty Images)

Nearly 100 flood warnings remain in place in England following last week’s Storm Henk deluge, and householders who suffered flooding are still counting the cost.

The private boys’ school has switched to remote learning while the sewers are blocked.

Eton, one of the UK’s most prestigious schools, counts among its alumni former prime ministers, including MrJohnson and David Cameron, as well as Princes William and Harry.

A spokesperson for Eton College said: “Following extensive flooding in the region, the Thames Water sewers which serve the town of Eton, flooded.

“Therefore, boys could not return for the scheduled start of term on January 9 and the college has moved to remote teaching.

“We are in regular contact with Thames Water as they seek to resolve the situation and we look forward to welcoming boys back as soon as possible.”

A Thames Water spokesperson said: “Our engineers are responding to reported sewerage issues at Eton College, Windsor.

“In this instance, the recent heavy rainfall, along with high groundwater levels and river flooding, caused our local sewer system to overload.”

Thames said sorry to staff and pupils affected, adding: “Our teams will be carrying out a clean-up in the coming days once the river levels recede.”

Join our commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies


Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in