Twickenham MP delivers petition to stop Thames Water’s plans to dump more sewage in Thames

Image above: Munira Wilson MP

Peititon signed by nearly 30,000 people presented in the Commons

MP for Twickenham Munira Wilson presented a petition on Thames Water’s proposals to put treated sewage in the river at Teddington, in the House of Commons on Tuesday (12 December).  The petition has been signed by almost 30,000 people.

She said: “I sincerely hope that Ministers will listen to the more than 700 residents who have signed this petition, the almost 30,000 people who have signed the Change.org petition and the many hundreds who responded to the company’s consultation on the water resources management plan, all of whom are deeply concerned about the significant environmental, social and construction impacts.”

Residents expressed their concern over the water company’s Direct River Abstraction (DRA) plans to extract up to 75 million litres of water from the Thames at Teddington and replace it with treated effluent from Mogden Sewage Treatment work.

After presenting the petition in the Commons, Miss Wilson said via ‘X’:

“It’s bad for residents, the environment & water bill payers & barely scratches the surface of the problem it seeks to resolve.”

Thames Water set out the proposal in their draft regional plan for South East England in August, and say it is needed to secure water supplies for future generations in London.

Image above: Thames Water van; library image

Thames Water admit they cannot pay back £190m debt

On the same day the Twickenham MP presented the petition, Thames Water chairman Sir Adrian Montague was being grilled by MPs over the company’s financial crisis. He admitted Thames Water, which supplies water to London, could not pay back their £190m loan, which is due to be paid off next April.

Appearing before MPs on the Environment Committee in Parliament and said:

“This is a seminal moment for Thames. You know, we were very fragile in July. The chief executive resigned without notice ten days before a change of chairman. The financial markets took fright.

“We have stabilised the business. We need to make a fresh start. I know management always says this, but it’s true in this case, because this is a fresh team.”

READ ALSO: Thames Water ‘cannot pay back £190m debt in time’

West London MPs criticise Thames Water

Ruth CadburyBoth the MP for Brentford and Isleworth, Ruth Cadbury, and the MP for Hammersmith, Andy Slaughter, have recently criticised Thames Water for their abysmal lack of service.

Ruth Cadbury said:

‘‘Residents across West London have had to put up with a terrible service from Thames Water for far too long. This has included the smell and mosquitos from Mogden Sewage Treatment Works, the flooding of the Duke of Northumberland river in early 2020 and the continued pumping of dilute sewage into the Thames.

“I know from listening to people locally that they are fed up with the lack of action from Thames Water, which comes alongside a continued rise in water bills. The river Thames is the beating heart of our local area and of London, and provides a space not just for animals but also for water activities such as kayaking, rowing and for riverside walks.

“I also know how concerned and worried people are about the new plans to take water out of the Thames at Teddington and replace it with diluted sewage.”

In an interview with The Chiswick Calendar Andy Slaughter also attacked Thames Water’s “hopelessly inadequate” record. He told us:

“I think people are seriously worried about whether they are going to survive. If they don’t survive, what’s going to happen? Are they going to sell out to new private owners, who will somehow bail them out the debt crisis they’re in?

Is the government going to step in and and take over, either temporarily or permanently? I don’t think anybody knows the answer to those questions”.