Shropshire Star

Shropshire’s waterways benefitting from £450m Severn Trent investment

Severn Trent’s kicked off an accelerated £450m region-wide programme of investment, where once complete, spills from active storm overflows will reduce by 20 per cent a year - with work in Shropshire well underway.

Emma Walmsley. Photo: Severn Trent

The company has committed to going further and faster, to reduce the use of overflows and has embarked on a programme of work to 900 locations to be completed across the Midlands this year alone.

A series of unique projects in Shropshire have already been completed, including the installation of storage solutions in the way of a new 70,000 litre tank at Pontesbury Waste Treatment Works.

The additional storage means more storm water can be captured on the site, which equates to around 70,000 bathtubs – helping to reduce spills and protect the Rea Brook.

The work will see a series of projects to reduce spills from overflows, benefitting Shropshire’s waterways.

Overflows are designed to protect homes and businesses from flooding during heavy rainfall, however Severn Trent know they need to do more to reduce the effect on local rivers.

This accelerated work will carry on long term and supports the company’s plans on £250m being spent on improving 167 overflows in Shropshire – allowing Severn Trent to move quicker and faster than Government targets.

Emma Walmsley, Senior Project Manager at Severn Trent said: “Our customers want us to go as quickly as possible to reduce spills from overflows, and we’re doing just that. We’re working round the clock, finding new and agile ways of delivering complex schemes quicker, and this project in Shropshire is a great example of that.

“By installing the new storage solutions, the site can hold even more storm water – which means less need for overflows, benefiting the river. The solutions mean the additional water can be safely stored, and when the rain passes can go through the treatment process as usual.

“We’re also looking to install more storage solutions, make more improvements to our network, and deliver more schemes across Shropshire at pace.”

900 locations will benefit this year alone across the Midlands, with plenty set to come for Shropshire.

Emma said: “We know just how important rivers are to everyone and they’re just as important to us. This series of work for Shropshire is a really exciting step and compliments the existing things we’re doing in the area already as part of our bathing rivers projects, and storm overflow action plan. Our customers can trust that we’re delivering what they’re after, and we’re doing it faster than anyone else. We’re looking forward to sharing more details of the work in Shropshire soon.”

These accelerated projects build on Severn Trent’s delivery of significant investment in Shropshire that includes:

As part of its Green Recovery, Severn Trent is investing £78m to improve the water quality along more than 50km of river in Shropshire and Warwickshire and help move two stretches (on the rivers Teme and Leam) towards bathing quality by 2025 – making them better places for everyone.

Launched a £11.5 million investment programme at six sewage treatment works across Shropshire to further improve river health in the area, including Monkmoor Sewage Treatment Works. Once the work is complete, the multi-million pound investment will ensure the company’s operations will not be responsible for any harm caused to that particular stretch of the River Severn.

Severn Trent has been recognised as an industry leader when it comes to environmental performance, achieving the Environment Agency’s highest four-star rating for four years running. It is confident of securing this for an unprecedented fifth year later in July 2024.

By Ria Gaffney - Contributor

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