British Water: Off-mains Sewerage Workshop

In March 2017, Olivia Bailey and Ioannis Markidis attended a workshop run by British Water to find out more about challenges for off-mains sewerage in the UK. There were thoughtful discussions with many in the water industry. The Environment Agency gave a useful overview of legislation regarding wastewater discharge in rural communities, and the approaches to tackling catchment pollution. Treatment consultants made the case for the good design and installation of septic tanks, as well as outlining the need for package treatment plants. There was a healthy diversity of organisations present; a representative for the National Trust spoke to Olivia and Ioannis about the responsibilities that come with managing the sewage from its historic properties. Quote of the day? Well, one speaker said that ‘mankind has come so far with technology over the years, but still we are content to flush our toilets into a leaky trench’. It was an educational day for the WISE CDT students, who saw those from many organisations committed to working towards a common goal – the safe disposal of our sewage.