Tag Archives: Pollution

Wandle Pollution Volunteer Project Wins Rivers Trust Award

We are delighted that our Urban Pollution Monitoring project has won the Rivers Trust Award for Science and Innovation.

Bella receives the award from Ivor Lewelyn, Director of the Atlantic Salmon Trust

Bella receives the award from Ivor Lewelyn, Director of the Atlantic Salmon Trust

The project was created in partnership with the Environment Agency (EA) so that trained Wandle Trust volunteers can respond to assess minor pollution incidents in place of EA staff and feed information back into the EA’s National Incident Recording System.

This enables reports of pollution (called in to the EA’s Incident line – 0800 80 70 60) to be attended more quickly and frees up the EA to spend more time on pollution prevention visits. The project has also been extended to include the regular monitoring of known polluting outfalls which has led to greater understanding of the extent of the pollution and a number of these outfalls have been addressed.

Many many thanks to all our wonderful and dedicated Pollution Assessment Volunteers, and also to the very supportive staff at the EA – in particular Kate and Richard. If you’d like to get involved with the project please contact pollution@wandletrust.org.

The Wandle makes headlines in The Angler

The Angler - front cover-001

There’s a great article about the Wandle river restoration story in the latest issue of The Angler, the Angling Trust’s new-look magazine, which has been dropping through members’ letter boxes over the weekend.

The Angling Trust was instrumental in helping the Wandle Trust to negotiate the 5-year Living Wandle project funding for the river’s restoration, after the notorious pollution incident in 2007, and its Fish Legal team are constantly negotiating and fighting court cases on behalf of other rivers and their local residents.

If you’re already a member of the Angling Trust, keep an eye out for the article. And if you’re not a member, but you enjoy fishing the Wandle and other rivers, we highly recommend joining the Trust and supporting one of the great forces for good in the conservation world!

The Angler - Wandle 1-001

The Angler - Wandle 2-001

Pollution in Pickle Ditch, Merton

There is a blocked foul sewer in the Pickle Ditch at Priory Retail Park in Merton which is causing raw sewage to leak into the river.  Thames Water have responded promptly and have deployed aerators where the Pickle Ditch meets the Wandle.  They also have tankers at St Georges Avenue overpumping the blocked sewer. Our thanks to Thames Water and the Environment Agency for their quick response.

Although there are  a number of reasons this sort of thing happens, one of the main causes is fat blockages. We can all help stop these things happening by never pouring oil or fat down the drains! Always dry wipe your plates, cooking tins etc.. before washing up.

Silt trap project: Update 6

The third Downstream Defender is in the road! Despite hitting some groundwater, progress to date has been very good (touching plenty of wood). We are currently in the process of building the monitoring chambers up and downstream of the silt trap and connecting up the pipes before it will come live early next week. R.J. Dance/Emerald Construction have done a sterling job and a big thanks to them. We also have to thank the patience of all those that the works have affected, in particular the residents of Mill Pond Place who have very kindly put up with our disruption for some time now. We are now into the final leg!

The silt trap being lowered into place

The silt trap being lowered into place

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The silt trap bedded in and pipe work going in


Excavations to lay the new pipes and monitoring chambers

Excavations to lay the new pipes and monitoring chambers


Silt trap project: Update 5

The installation of the third and final silt trap is underway on Butter Hill.

Work started on Monday with R.J.Dance being the Principal Contractor.  Progress to date has been great: the large surface water drain has been tapped into, a large deep hole has been excavated, and we are awaiting delivery of the chamber on Friday (21st June) morning.

Next week will see the pipes being connected and the Downstream Defender becoming active. Exciting times!!

Silt trap project: Update 4

The silt trap in Mill Lane is now in and functioning!

All that can be seen of it is a nice smooth patch of new tarmac and a manhole cover that will be used to clean the chamber every 6 months or so.

Here is  a picture of Councillor Hamish Pollock checking out the site of the chamber with Wandle Trust Director Bella Davies last week.


The second chamber on Denmark Road is now well under way and in fact our contractors F.M. Conway will be finished work on Thursday!  In contrast to the first chamber everything has gone smoothly with no surprise pipes emerging to slow us down!

This site has an important extra addition in that we have included two monitoring chambers into the design.  The surface water pipe first feeds into one inspection chamber then into the silt trap before passing into the second monitoring chamber and then on towards the river.

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The silt trap in the ground with the surface water pipe shown in the foreground.   This area of open pipe is where the upstream monitoring chamber is located.

The chambers will allow us to monitor the effectiveness of the traps by taking samples before and after the silt trap.  This will be carried out using automated sampling apparatus to allow analysis of the water quality and any particulates present.


The access chambers  (Two monitoring chambers and one for the silt trap) being built up to road height ready for the manhole covers.

The third and final chamber project which will be located on Butter Hill will start on 17th June.

Silt trap project: Update 3

The mystery pipe has been identified as a redundant water pipe that was first laid in 1868 and has now been removed.  All systems are now go, and the silt trap is being fitted as we speak!

A 3.5 metre hole has been dug:


A concrete slab laid:


The collection chamber inserted:


The hydrodynamic separator inserted:


The road should all be back to normal by Friday, and then it’s on to the next site in Denmark Road on Tuesday!

Silt trap project: Update 2

After some detective work involving a number of utility companies the mystery pipe has now been identified as a redundant water main.

This was removed on Friday 17 May but means we are now behind schedule with the works. Currently the aim is that Mill Lane works will be complete by Friday 24 May and we will be ready to start on Denmark Road on Tuesday 28 May.

Silt trap project: Update

As you may have seen, work started on the silt trap project on Mill Lane, Carshalton on Monday 13 May.

While digging up the road the contractors have found a gas pipe that is in a different location than was shown in the ground radar survey.

This has implications for the location of the silt trap chamber and will result in some delay to the project while this is resolved. There will likely be knock on delays to the work on Denmark Road and Butter Hill as a result.  We are working hard with Conways, Southern Gas and the London Borough of Sutton to minimise any  potential delay or disruption.  We will keep you informed as work progresses.