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SEWAGE SUMMIT: Progress made in bid to stop the dumping of sewage into the River Chess

 Published on: 30th September 2020   |   By: Holly Bullen   |   Category: Uncategorized

There has been significant progress in the battle to save the River Chess from sewage destruction after councillors, residents and Thames Water met to combat the problem.

The river has often been polluted with raw sewage which has been dumped after levels of heavy rainfall.

However, it appears that a meeting held at Sarratt Village Hall on Friday, September 25, was a step in the right direction as proposals were made to save the river and protect the health of residents.

The meeting was attended by several local councillors, including councillor Paula Hiscocks, councillor Marilyn Butler and councillor Alison Wall. 

Rickmansworth Town cllr Paula Hiscocks said she wants to ensure that together with Three Rivers District Council, that they protect the rare chalk streams and the health of residents.

She said: “I am delighted that Richard Aylard, the sustainability director for Thames Water has publicly agreed to my direct request for information boards to be placed along the River Chess warning residents that there could be raw sewage contamination.”

Cllr Alison Wall added: “We need to scrutinise planning applications carefully, to ensure that developers are providing adequate surface water drainage systems in their plans, to prevent infiltration into sewer systems that then spill over into our precious chalk rivers.”

Gagan Mohindra MP stated that he intends to press for water companies to be mandatory consultees when planning applications are submitted.   

In a recent Facebook post, the River Chess Association also shared a positive update on the progress of combating the problem.

They said: “Thames will be increasing capacity at the Chesham Sewage Treatment Works by 30 per cent over the next two years, this will reduce storm water sewage discharges.”

The Environment Agency did not attend the meeting, but a spokesman said: “We issued a warning to Thames Water in April in relation to its sewage treatment works at Chesham. As a result of our enforcement, Thames Water made a series of improvements to its operations to prevent any further harmful effect on river water-quality.

“We will continue to press water companies to protect both people and the environment, taking appropriate regulatory action where permits are breached.”

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