Nick Gibb MP visited the Lidsey Waste Water Treatment Works at the invitation of Southern Water. The purpose of the visit was to discuss Southern Water’s plans to reduce storm overflow discharges. Accompanying Mr Gibb on the visit were: Rupert Langmead (Local farmer), Emma Mackendrick (Adames Flansham farm), John Hall (Summerly Estate, Felpham resident representative), Paul Cann (Principal Drainage Engineer, Arun District Council) and Kevin Macknay (West Sussex County Council Flood Risk Management team).
Over the last year Mr Gibb has been holding meetings with local farmers concerned about discharges of untreated wastewater flooding farm land. He has also held meetings with Felpham residents’ representatives to discuss pollutants on the beach and foul water leaks in Limmer Lane. The visit to Lidsey was to assist all sides understand the issues and how they can be resolved.
Nick Gibb said: “We saw first hand how the Lidsey plant treats waste water and how storm overflow surcharges are handled. We raised the issue of the 10 days of surcharges into the Lidsey Rife that took place in January.
“It is clear that Southern Water are determined to reduce surcharges. They are investing £20 million in upgrading plant at Lidsey and securing the waste water pipe system to reduce the ingress of ground water and surface water into the sewerage system, for which it was not designed.
“The expansion of the Lidsey plant will mean it can increase the volume of water it treats from 129 litres per second to 203 litres per second.
“Together with Rupert Langmead, Emma McLaren and John Hall, we emphasised to Southern Water the importance of reducing and then eliminating sewage discharges, given the damage they cause to bathing water, people’s health and to farm land.
“Further meetings with Southern Water will take place to assess how to reduce the infiltration of ground water into the sewer system.”
Photo 1: from left - Paul Cann (Arun DC); John Hall (Summerly Estate Felpham); Kevin Macknay (WSCC); Rupert Langmead (farmer); Charlotte Widdowd (Southern Water); Darren Oxborough (Southern Water); Nick Gibb; Kevin Elms (Southern Water); Emma McLaren (Adames farm); Nick Mills (Southern Water Head of Storm Overflow Taskforce).
Photos 2 and 3: Lidsey Waste Water Treatment Plant