Abstraction – Wessex rivers

The Director has joined the Wessex Water Low Flows Consultative Group, newly formed to monitor the success or otherwise of new initiatives to address abstraction problems on the Wylye

The Director has joined the Wessex Water Low Flows Consultative Group, newly formed to monitor the success or otherwise of new initiatives to address abstraction problems on the Wylye, Piddle and Avon at Malmesbury. A major relief scheme was recently put forward by Wessex Water which would have removed the need for any abstraction on the upper reaches of these rivers, but the plan failed to receive ministerial approval on the grounds of cost.

We are continuing to press for a long-term solution to upper/middle stream abstraction on the three rivers but, meanwhile, we will see if the very much down-graded efforts to improve water flow will have any significant effect on the environment. Although this Group is looking at local issues, Defra is watching progress closely to see whether the solutions we eventually negotiate with Wessex and the politicians could be used in other areas of the country which have a similar abstraction problem.