Thames Tideway Tunnel Project History

October 2012

Londoners’ rehousing offer in Thames Tunnel sewer plan

Hundreds of Londoners will be offered the option of being rehoused for three years to make way for work on a £4.1bn “super sewer”. The tunnel would run from west to east London collecting 39 million tonnes of sewage discharged into the River Thames each year. A Thames Water spokesman said: “We will offer people temporary relocation.” [...]

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Party conferences tour ends in Birmingham

On Tuesday 9th October the Thames Tideway Tunnel project team held a drop-in session for delegates at the Conservative Party Conference in Birmingham. Visitors included the newly-appointed Defra Secretary of State, Owen Paterson MP, and the Water Minister, Richard Benyon MP. The leader of Wandsworth Council, Cllr Ravia Gavindia (pictured with Phil Stride) also stopped [...]

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September 2012

Londoners back Tideway Tunnel

Campaigners from Thames Tunnel Now were out in force promoting their message to visitors to the Thames Festival held on the embankment outside City Hall.           They received a warm reception from Londoners who want an end to the scandal which sees a staggering 39 million tonnes of untreated sewage entering the [...]

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Tideway Times – Autumn Update

In this edition Tideway Tunnels look at the recent launch of ‘Tunnelworks’, the free education resource available schools. STEM ambassador and project engineer, Matthew Wall, talks about the benefits of a career in engineering for young people. We also cover the reaction of Water Minister Richard Benyon, to the improvements at Beckton Sewage Treatment Works. [...]

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H&F “Scaremongering” over Super Sewer Threat to Hammersmith Bridge

Thames Water is accusing Hammersmith and Fulham Council of “scaremongering” after claims by the council that the Thames Tunnel or super sewer, poses a threat to Hammersmith Bridge. Read More

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July 2012

Thames Tunnel gets Big Thumbs Up

Cross capital survey shows 85 per cent support for the proposed Thames Tunnel to help tackle sewage pollution.

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Finalised Thames Tideway Tunnel plans published

Finalised proposals from Thames Water for the new ‘Supersewer’, needed to help tackle increasing sewage pollution to the tidal River Thames, have been unveiled for a 12-week public preview.

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May 2012

Thames Tunnel Phase 2 consultation report published

The report outlines the company’s response to all the comments it received during the 14-week consultation, which ran from4 November 2011to10 February 2012. It confirms the project’s preferred sites for construction work remain unchanged, but pledges an ongoing dialogue with local people to modify proposals, where possible, to try and reduce impacts on surrounding communities.

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April 2012

Foreshore geology probes ahead of Thames Tunnel construction

As part of our ongoing site investigations for the Thames Tunnel, we need to undertake some more boreholes on the river. The boreholes will be about 15m deep and will provide us with information about the geology near the foreshore.

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Boris Johnson orders rethink over Thames supersewer

The future of the Thames supersewer was in doubt today after Boris Johnson announced plans for a full consultation over the project. Mr Johnson said he is “concerned over the rising cost” of the scheme as well as the disruption to Londoners living along the route.

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Sewer politics in SW6

Has London’s Conservative mayor deliberately misled west London residents over the proposed Thames “super sewer” in order to secure votes?

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DEFRA – Thames Tunnel Evidence Assessment Final Report

An assessment of the current evidence produced on the options designed to address the problem of untreated sewage polluting the River Thames was completed in February 2012. The purpose of the assessment was to ensure that due consideration has been given to the full range of evidence available on all the proposed options to address [...]

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March 2012

Sewage project guidelines approved

New planning guidelines for major sewage projects in England have been approved by MPs, with two London projects detailed.

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Thames Tunnel vital for London’s economy, says new report

A new report ‘Why does London need the Thames Tunnel?’ has found the major new sewer will be a huge boost for the capital’s economy.

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Water firm given £400m to cut bills

Britain’s highest water bills are set to be cut by £50 a year as MPs voted through a £400 million handout to a private company.

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February 2012

New device unlocks Thames Tunnel sewer surveys

A specially designed ‘lock gate’ valve has been fitted in a Sir Joseph Bazalgette sewer near Westminster Bridge to allow survey work for the Thames Tunnel.

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BBC Radio Four: Costing the Earth – Tunnel Beneath the Thames

Every time more than two millimetres of rain drops onto the streets of London a combination of raw sewerage and rainwater overwhelms the Victorian sewers and pours into the River Thames, killing fish and disgusting the users of the river.

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Rowers Against Thames Sewage take a stand on crap

The newly formed Rowers against Thames Sewage, and members of Thames Tunnel Now, are regularly ‘knee deep in crap’ as frequent users of the River Thames. The group used this as the basis for a strongly-worded submission to the Thames Tunnel Consultation last week. The second phase of consultations closed on Friday February 10th. See [...]

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January 2012

Thames rower aims to highlight ‘need’ for super sewer – BBC

An ocean rower has taken to the River Thames in an attempt to highlight why she thinks a “super sewer” should be built, despite massive opposition from residents. Roz Savage is supporting Thames Tunnel Now which wants to challenge the vocal opposition groups which do not want a 20-mile tunnel built.

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Appalled ocean rower backs ‘supersewer’

Sewage in Thames a “disgusting embarrassment” to London Roz Savage tells MP Zac Goldsmith’s Thames Tunnel Now event   Roz Savage, the ocean rower, is appealing for opponents of a super sewer for London to take the long-term view, saying: “We need to accept some short-term pain for the long-term gain.” The 44-year-old told a [...]

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Thames super-sewer a ‘necessity’ to prevent EU fines

A super-sewer for London is not a choice but a necessity, and must go ahead despite opposition in order to preserve the Thames and cope with London’s rising population, according to Lord Chris Smith, chairman of the Environment Agency.

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Super-Sewer Debate: A Step Too Far for SuDS?

The extent and passion of the debate over the proposed £4.1 billion Thames Tunnel “super sewer” has highlighted the mountain still to climb in reaching a vision for integrated urban water management in the UK which can be shared and owned by all stakeholders including planners, designers, the water companies and the general public.

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Another chance for Fulham’s residents to have their say

Following a request from local residents’ associations, we are holding an additional drop-in session on Saturday 28 January 2012, 10am-4pm at Hurlingham and Chelsea School, Peterborough Road, London, SW6 3ED.

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Council to oppose Thames Water plans for Shad Thames Pumping Station

Papers to be considered by Southwark’s cabinet next week show that the council is planning to object to Thames Water’s ‘super sewer’ proposal, both in principle and in terms of the plans for Chambers Wharf and Shad Thames Pumping Station.

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19 January 2012 – Public meeting for Chambers Wharf

Representatives from Thames Water will take questions and hear concerns from residents about the proposed Chambers Wharf worksite at a public meeting on 19 January 2012, 8pm at City Hall, The Queen’s Walk, SE1 2AA.

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This is Local London – Big win for Barn Elms, but no time to relax, say campaigners

Barnes residents have had a boost in their battle to ensure Barn Elms playing fields are removed from a list of potential super sewer development sites.

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Evening Standard – ‘Rats’ fight super sewer ventilation shaft plans

Campaigners are threatening legal action to stop a super sewer ventilation shaft being built near their homes.Residents fear the 15 metre-high shaft will be built in Carnwath Road, Fulham, as part of the £4.1 billion project.

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Evening Standard – Sir Patrick Stewart boldly battles supersewer

Star Trek’s Captain Jean-Luc Picard told today of his fears that drilling for London’s supersewer could “devastate” the peaceful atmosphere of the Thames.

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Design Council Thames Tunnel Review

At its best Design Review can provoke new ways of thinking about development proposals that help them to become more than just the sum of their parts. In its reviews of major infrastructure projects across England, Design Council Cabe has strived to change the mind-set of an industry that too often considers design as a [...]

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December 2011

Water experts vote in favour of Thames Tunnel super sewer

Water experts from across London last week rejected suggestions that controlling rainwater near source is a better way of controlling sewage discharges into the River Thames than Thames Water’s £4.1bn Thames Tunnel. Seventy six water industry experts heard a debate at the Society of Chemical Industry in Belgrave Square, organised by the Chartered Institution of [...]

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November 2011

Thames Tunnel Coalition criticises Selborne report

Environmental, wildlife and amenity groups reacted with dismay to Lord Selborne’s Thames Tunnel Commission report suggesting alternatives to the planned Thames Tunnel. Thames21 Chief Executive Debbie Leach said: “This report’s suggestions will not solve the problem. Should its views be accepted, the River Thames will be devastated by worsening sewage pollution.” The Thames Tunnel Now [...]

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Environment Agency backs Thames Tunnel

The Environment Agency has added its voice to Government’s support for the Thames Tunnel project, following a statement to Parliament by Defra minister Richard Benyon.The tunnel, which would run beneath all other infrastructure under the capital, would transfer the sewage that currently spills into the tidal Thames, to Beckton Sewage Treatment Works in east London, [...]

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Launch of the Thames Tunnel Now Coalition

Support the Thames Tunnel Now! A coalition of national and local organisations has called for MPs and local councils to support the construction of a new tunnel under the Thames which will stop tens of millions of tonnes of sewage overflowing into London’s river each year. The tunnel proposal, which is the result of more [...]

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October 2011

BBC – Expert claims River Thames ‘super sewer is for profit’

An expert has claimed controversial plans to build a £3.6bn ‘super sewer’ in London are motivated by profit. Colin Green, a professor of water economics, says Thames Water will make at least £100m a year if it goes ahead.

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September 2011

BBC – Expert in rethink on Thames ‘super-sewer’ plan

An expert who recommended London should have a £3.6bn “super-sewer” has said there may be a cheaper alternative involving two shorter tunnels. Chris Binnie led a study group which in 2005 said one tunnel under the Thames, from Hammersmith to Beckton, was the best way to solve sewage dumping.

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Boris Johnson – It will take a super-sewer to get London out of this mess

The sewers of London are already so full, and so much rainfall now sluices into them off the concrete and tarmac rather than sinking into the turf, that these Bazalgette interceptors are already exploding into the Thames about 50 times a year, and the discharge rate is increasing the whole time.

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June 2011

Guardian – Thousands of fish dead after Thames sewerage overflow

Pollution teams on Thursday were still clearing up the Thames in west London four days after 450,000 tonnes of raw household and industrial sewage overflowed into the river. The incident, which occurred after nearly 30mm of rain fell in a few hours on Sunday, killed tens of thousands of fish and left condoms, faeces and [...]

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Massive Fish Kill following Thames Pollution incident

Reports have come into the Thames Anglers Conservancy of a major Tidal Thames Pollution incident on Monday. Heavy rain over the last 24 hours have caused Thames Water to release raw sewage into the river from the Combined Sewage Overflows. Bubbler boats and hydrogen peroxide are being used to increase the oxygen levels.

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December 2010

Antibiotic resistant E.coli found in Thames

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Thames Tunnel consultation – Response from the London Assembly

The Health and Public Services Committee welcomes this opportunity to comment on Thames Water’s proposal to build the Thames Tunnel, in order to prevent the discharge of untreated sewage into the Thames. We are grateful to Thames Water for its participation in the Committee’s investigation of this topic and the level of detail about the [...]

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September 2010

Richard Benyon – Sewer Overflows (River Thames)

Richard Benyon (Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Natural Environment and Fisheries), Environment, Food and Rural Affairs; Newbury, Conservative). In the 19th century Sir Joseph Bazalgette built a sewerage network for London with the capacity that he believed would meet all foreseeable needs.

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July 2010

Environment secretary Caroline Spelman supports Thames tunnel plans

Environment Secretary Caroline Spelman today gave her support to Thames Water’s plans for a tunnel to reduce the amount of raw sewage discharged into the River Thames.

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June 2009

Evening Standard – Spill of raw sewage into Thames kills fish

More than 20,000 tonnes of raw sewage gushed into the River Thames, killing hundreds of fish. A major inquiry into how the spillage happened was underway today after Thames Water admitted it was responsible.

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July 2007

Environment Agency Case study – Tideway water quality improvements

A large-scale project is underway to improve the water quality of the Thames Tideway. This case study focuses on the construction of the Thames and Lee tunnels. It is part of the London State of the Environment Report 2010.

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Health Protection Agency Report – Thames Recreational users Study

Safe and attractive recreational water environments on the Thames are a valuable resource to Londoners and visitors; however those responsible for public health have a duty of care to ensure that recreational use of the river is not detrimental to health.

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March 2007

BBC – New tunnel for Thames pollution

A £2bn tunnel is to be built to prevent untreated sewage and rainwater polluting the River Thames.

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Euro-MP Success for Thames sewage petition!

A long-awaited government announcement of plans to tackle the sewage situation in the River Thames in line with EU clean water laws has been welcomed by London’s Liberal Democrat Euro-MP Baroness Sarah Ludford, who took a petition to the European Parliament and campaigned successfully for Brussels’ intervention.

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Mayor says new sewage tunnel is ‘step forward’ for London

The Mayor Ken Livingston today (Thursday 22nd March 2007) welcomed the Government announcement that a new sewer will be built from Hammersmith and Abbey Mills to Beckton to stop sewage overflowing into the Thames.

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January 2007

DEFRA – Thames Tideway Strategic Study

In 2000 the Thames Tideway Strategic Study (TTSS) under the chairmanship of Professor Chris Binnie and including members from Thames Water Utilities, Defra, the Environment Agency and the Greater London Authority, with the Office of Water Services (Ofwat) in an observer capacity, looked at the combined sewer overflows affecting the Thames Tideway and the River [...]

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July 2005

BBC – Tunnel ‘needed’ for Thames sewage

About one billion litres of raw sewage was dumped into the Thames during the storms in June, Liberal Democrats on the London Assembly have claimed.Figures show between 24 and 29 June, the untreated sewage was pumped into the river due to the inability of the sewers to cope.

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February 2005

Thames Tideway Strategic Study – Steering Group Report 2005

The Thames Tideway Strategic Study investigated the environmental impact of wet weather discharges from 57 Combined Sewer Overflows (CSOs) and found that some discharge storm water and sewage into the River Thames on average once a week. These discharges cause offensive conditions in the river and on the foreshore, result in an elevated health risk [...]

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December 2004

Sewage dumped in Thames every month

Raw sewage has been pumped into the Thames in London every month for the last four years, in far greater quantities than the government has previously admitted, according to new figures.

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September 2004

Evening Standard – Study to measure Thames health risk

A year-long study is to examine whether using the Thames is a health risk for sailors and rowers. Earlier this month, some 600,000 tonnes of raw sewage were washed into the river following a storm, causing oxygen levels to plunge and killing thousands of fish.

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Guardian – Harmful levels of bacteria in Thames increase calls for sewer renewal

Concern about the risks of pumping raw sewage into the Thames increased yesterday, as tests showed that even modest discharges raise the amount of bacteria in the water to potentially dangerous levels.

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Telegraph – Still no long term solution to Thames sewage problem

Water chiefs do still not have a long-term plan to deal with the problem sewage and waste water being released into the Thames following last month’s storms. Up to five million tonnes of waste were released into the Thames, triggering fears of a threat to public health and wildlife after two flash floods saw a [...]

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August 2004

Evening Standard – Scandal of Thames sewage

A furious row has broken out over the decision to deliberately poison the Thames with raw sewage, killing tens of thousands of fish and other aquatic species. Up to one million tons of sewage was pumped into the river by Thames Water to stop the waste being pushed out into streets and homes as London [...]

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BBC – Storm sewage kills fish in Thames

Thousands of fish have been killed after 600,000 tonnes of untreated sewage was forced into the Thames during Tuesday’s storms. The Environment Agency said the dead fish were visible in the river at Kew, Brentford and Isleworth in west London.

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