Top of main content

Water transfer from the River Severn to the River Thames

What's the solution?

This is a water transfer from the North West and Midlands to the South East to support the South East of England during drought events. The water would be provided from the River Severn itself, with additional sources of water provided by Severn Trent Water and United Utilities. The water would be moved from the River Severn to the River Thames either by a new pipeline or restoration of the Cotswold canals. The diversity of sources provides resilience and means the scheme can be developed in a phased manner.

Map of the Severn Thames transfer

Map key

  • Green - new pipeline
  • Orange - interconnector canal (restored)

Sources of water

  • 1 - Temporary use of existing United Utilities abstraction from Lake Vyrnwy
  • 2 - Water resource redeployment at Shrewsbury
  • 3 - Treated water from Minworth STW
  • 4 - River abstraction reduction at Mythe
  • 5 - Treated water from Netheridge STW

New water transfer infrastructure

  • 6 - Pipeline to bypass the River Vyrnwy
  • 7 - Pipeline from Gloucestershire to Oxfordshire (preferred option)
  • 8 - Pipeline and restoration of the Cotswold canals (alternative option)
  • 9 - Water is abstracted from the River Severn near Deerhurst for transfer via the preferred pipeline option to Culham.
  • 10 - Water is released into the River Thames at Culham for re-abstraction further downstream

Gate 2 reports