A sewage treatment works in Berkhamsted has discharged waste into the Grand Union Canal several times in the past month.
The storm overflow at Berkhamsted Sewage Works (BSW), operated by Thames Water, goes into the canal, which runs directly through the town.
According to Thames Water’s live map of storm discharges, there have been multiple instances of sewage entering the canal in recent weeks, a waterway which is regularly used for recreational purposes.
One of these discharges began at 5.30pm on January 4 and lasted for at least 17 hours.
Feargal Sharkey, an environmental activist who raised awareness of the incident on social media, stated: “If you live in Berkhamsted, I’d stay away from the Grand Union Canal for a few days.”
Local resident Gareth Bellamy replied: “Many a pleasant canal-side walk has been ruined by the absolute stink down there.”
Berko News also recorded a sewage discharge from the same spot on January 23 that lasted for at least five hours, and another on January 24 that lasted for one hour and 30 minutes.
Thames Water state on their website that upgrades worth up to £20million are currently being completed at BSW, which will reduce the need for sewage discharges in wet weather. The works are due to be completed later this year.
Thames Water have been contacted for comment.