Northern Ireland

Storm Desmond flooding disrupting Fermanagh, one week on

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Media captionThe Moat Primary School is aptly named, as it is surrounded by water

A week after Storm Desmond, people in County Fermanagh are still suffering from the effects of flooding with long diversions due to the closure of the only two roads across Upper Lough Erne.

More than 30 primary school children who live in Teemore near Derrylin now have to travel on a long diversion via Enniskillen to reach their school in Lisnaskea.

Their normal route to the appropriately named Moat Primary School is cut off by flood water, and the journey that normally takes about 15 minutes now takes up to an hour.

Ann Patterson, whose three youngest children get the school bus from their home on Geaglum Road, says it "leaves children a wee bit tired especially when they come home in the evening.

"I'm sure they're tired in school as well."

Image caption The flooding has meant an extra long round trip for the school bus

Some of Mrs Patterson's neighbours are also struggling with the floodwater.

Gabriel Fitzpatrick said a third of his farm is flooded and he is not expecting the water to disappear anytime soon.

He had spent £3,000 on lorry loads of stones to raise the lane to his house after the 2009 flood, but it is now again under two feet of water.

"I don't believe there's any help for a farmer like me for doing these jobs - you just have to do it out of your own pocket," he says.

"We don't seem to have anyone that's responsible for it.

Image caption A third of Gabriel Fitzpatrick's farm has been flooded

"We've a pile of organisations sending you around in a circle - when you ring one they send you to ring somebody else, and ring somebody else, and nobody accepts responsibility for the lake.

"So you can't pin anybody down to get an answer: are they going to do anything, or can they do anything?"

The roads across the lough were raised in 2010 but, now they have flooded again, Mr Fitzpatrick believes money could be spent on raising the level higher to keep access open.

The Rivers Agency said the levels on Lough Erne have now begun to fall and the weather forecast for the week is looking favourable for the floodwaters to begin to recede.

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