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Thames Water response to Hogsmill pollution fine

Wednesday 26th May 2021 15:15

Thames Water has today been fined £4 million at Aylesbury Crown Court after pleading guilty to pollution incidents which took place between 2016 and 2019 in the Kingston area.  

Steve Spencer, Thames Water operations director, said: “We’re very sorry for what happened at Hogsmill sewage works five years ago, and the other three incidents that have been sentenced today. It doesn’t reflect how much we care about the environment, our customers and communities, and it’s not how we want to perform.  

“We’ve developed a turnaround plan which focuses on significantly improving our performance, with an unprecedented amount of investment directed towards safeguarding the environment. We’re committed to long term, sustainable solutions and we’re already working with partners across our region to enhance and restore the rivers we all share and value.

“We’re pleased the judge recognised this new approach in his comments, and we are determined to deliver on our promises. We strongly believe that discharges of untreated sewage are unacceptable, even when they are legally permitted, and we will work with our stakeholders to accelerate work to stop them being necessary.”  

Thames Water’s business plan for the next five years will deliver environmental improvements to 745km of rivers across the region. The use of digital technology to create a more intelligent network and enable more proactive maintenance and repair will help drive a step change in pollution reductions.  

The company has also recently launched its Smarter Water Catchments initiative, which sets out how it will collectively protect and enhance the River Chess, River Evenlode and River Crane over the next 10 years. The plans were co-created in partnership with 67 organisations who have an interest in these rivers.  

Thames Water will be looking at expanding this approach to other catchments from 2025 onwards.