A £3.5 million investment by Welsh Water will see sewage from a part of the Herefordshire cleaned more before it is pumped into a nearby brook.

Welsh Water said it was making improvements to its wastewater treatment works in Weobley, near Leominster.

Back in May, the not-for-profit utility company started work on a project to upgrade the plant which it owns and operates in the area.

A spokesperson said the treatment works already treat the wastewater it receives from the surrounding area to a high standard, but the planned upgrades will see the treatment process enhanced even further.


Using innovative methods, the main improvement will be the introduction of a process which will remove phosphates from the treated wastewater.

Phosphates can cause algal bloom so removing them from the treated wastewater this will help reduce levels in the nearby Newbridge brook – which in turn will benefit the river quality and its aquatic life.

The work at the treatment works in Weobley should be completed next year, Welsh Water says

The work at the treatment works in Weobley should be completed next year, Welsh Water says

There is currently a ban on housing developments in the river Lugg catchment, which the Newbridge brook forms part of, because of high levels of phosphates. This is currently subject to a Herefordshire Council initiative to see the land unlocked for developments again.

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The river Wye has also been seen turning green over recent years, which is caused by algal bloom.

Welsh Water says it is responsible for up to one-third of the phosphorus in the main water bodies. The remainder is caused by other factors such as urban surface water drainage, misconnected drains, agricultural run-off, and animal faeces as well as private septic tanks.


It is investing £50 million before 2025 to reduce its impact. 

The upgrade work in Weobley is taking place within the boundary of the treatment works which is just off Kington Road. The company aims to have it completed early next year.

Welsh Water's senior project manager Andrew Davies said: "As a company, we are committed to ensuring we protect the environment that is in our care, and that includes the watercourses we interact with.

"There are a number of factors which contribute to phosphate levels in watercourses, and we are committed to ensuring we do all that we can to keep our contribution to the absolute minimum. Our significant investment here at Weobley reflects this.

"We appreciate that this kind of work can cause some inconvenience, but we will do all we can to keep this to a minimum and would like to thank people for bearing with us whilst we undertake these essential works."