Well, I did eventually get that email but only after my local MP contacted them, in response to that email and research carried out by a major developer last year, I sent this email below to the local newspapers; It is eye-opening; The History side of things is over, now it's back to Plan A.
I have been asked to send this in to you in regards to Actual Confirming Evidence from Thames Water which came via research on the internet and which was carried out by the agents (THDA) of Lafarge Tarmac's, in light to offer an alternative solution for their proposed development.
THDA submitted a Developers Enquiry to Thames Water in 2015 and they received a response from Thames Water in September 2015; the outcome of the enquiry, outlined in the Thames Water Utilities 'Sewer Impact Study'
"Confirmed that whilst the existing network has insufficient capacity".
The network that Thames Water are stating to THDA is that the 'Entire Rye Meads Catchment area' which has 8 Boroughs/Districts flowing waster water aka foul poo is beyond the ability to cope. Thames Water have claimed in a recent revision of the 2009 Water Cycle Study which was carried was completed in June 2015 that there is enough capacity at Rye Meads Waste Water Treatment Works but to get the waste water there, it has to pass through sewers that have Insufficient Capacity. On the other side of the Network which feeds in to Rye Meads; the East of England Plan from 2006 had already shown signs of over capacity and you know like the sand castle on the beach, when one artery is full, the others back up and over flow.
Lafarge in their attempt to remedy and in their own words 'These options confirm that whilst there is an insufficient capacity in the network, two storage options are available to provide a local solution to the capacity issue "in-case upgrades to the waste water and sewerage treatment works do not take place to facilitate planned growth (aka Rye Meads).
In the East of England Plan, Public Examination on February 15th 2006, the Environment Agency pointed out that 'concerns about the ability of Rye Meads sewerage treatment works (STW) to handle future demands without breaching EU environmental standards and that known technology, believe does not provide a solution for doing this within Rye Meads so that an alternative approach has to be looked for'.
In the same 2006 examination on the subject of Rye Meads, 'Rye Meads as we mentioned before, presently serves a very large area which includes Stevenage and Harlow. The scale of the development that is proposed across the catchment will almost certainly require higher standards of treatment and just to explain that, and the comment that you made, is that if you increase the loading on the STW's the available dilution in the water course is less therefore the technology to meet the standards has to be that much higher. What we're saying is that with the proposed population growth, the technology is not available to meet the standards beyond that which it can meet at the moment. And I have to say that Rye Mead is an exceptionally highly developed and highly efficient works at the moment'.
In the 2015 Draft Infrastructure Delivery Plan revised by Welwyn Hatfield Council, which is a revision of the 2012 plan of the same name, it states the following; 'Service Planning, Utilities 13.27: Thames Water have identified that to deliver broad location for growth around Welwyn Garden City & Hatfield it is likely that the following infrastructure and infrastructure upgrades will be required; A New Direct Connection to the Southern Outfall at Rye Meads' In Utilities 13.30: 'Failure to provide the upgrades required could result in adverse impacts such as sewer flooding and pollution of water courses'.
In the earlier '2012 Draft Infrastructure Delivery Plan', it also states, the original text; 'To deliver broad location for growth 1 (North East of Welwyn Garden City); A New Direct Connection to the Southern Outfall at Rye Meads will be required'.
I have investigated the 2009 Water Cycle Study (WCS) and found that there is No Southern Outfall at Rye Meads, what they are talking about in these draft plans is connecting a trunk sewer (a new one) to the southern facing point of Rye Meads waste water treatment works from WGC bypassing the current sewers which (and at the time they would have known would happen) have insufficient capacity. Our local sewer is the WGC Southern Outfall and now this has insufficient capacity - Unusable, in my opinion. That then connects into the Mimram Trunk Sewer before that connects in to the North Western Outfall Sewer which brings tons of waste down from Stevenage areas. Just so we are clear on the timings and are not led astray by similar facts; the WGC Southern Outfall was connected in 2003. The Draft Plans are 2012 & 2015. In a March 2016 email I received from Thames Water, as I had asked some stern questions on infrastructure, they said that they believed the 'Direct Connection to Rye Meads' relates to connecting to the Mimram Trunk Sewer, but in a 2013 email from Thames Water on the same question believed it was the WGC Southern Outfall.
In the March 2016 email by Thames Water they said in regards to 'building in other Catchments' related to Maple Lodge Sewerage Treatment Works but in a 2013 email by Thames Water on the same question it was in response to Stevenage and North Herts.
On the Subject of Maple Lodge Sewerage Works, which covers part of Hatfield, it reads in the March 2016 email by Thames Water the following; 'Maple Lodge WwTW has capacity to deal with known growth in the catchment until 2031. However, by 2031 the majority of the capacity will have been used leaving limited residual capacity to deal with increased housing allocations not currently listed. We will need to model the growth scenarios to confirm at what point a growth upgrade would be triggered. Within the Maple Lodge catchment is also Blackbirds WwTW and the interaction with Blackbirds WwTW is crucial to the flow received at Maple Lodge. We will also be considering sewerage network capacity needs in the upper reaches of the Maple Lodge catchment to deal with large scale growth in the future'.
Now that is 2016 and it sounds ok, now read the following from the 2012 Draft Infrastructure Delivery Plan by Welwyn Hatfield Council; 'Water Supply; Maple Lodge WwTW - Current flows are approaching the current process and hydraulic capacity at the WwTW. Creation of additional capacity would require the construction of new assets, which would require changing the layout of the existing site. This is further complicated by the fact the North of the site is at High Risk of flooding.'
Some other key facts to mention, in the 2009 WCS it states very clearly (past page 70) that 'there is ONLY 4 years worth of residential development left'. The figure they gave as the max total for the catchment was 6,400 homes; it is debatable whether there are 7 or 8 districts in the Rye Meads catchment, but lets assume 7 for now. 6,400 homes divide by 7 leaves, not very many! To add to this point, even the WCS Stakeholders were alarmed in the 2009 WCS, they state; 'There is some concern from the WCS stakeholders that solely relying on the wastewater treatment at Rye Meads WwTW is Not the most Sustainable solution in the long term, especially given the low flow issues in the upper reaches of the rivers in the catchment.'
In the revised Water Cycle Study June 2015 ; it states on page 61. 5.25: 'Any changes in consents to (attempt to) meet the requirements of the Water Framework Directive will be the factor most likely to "Restrict the use of Rye Meads WwTW in the future". As established above, there is Theoretical Physical Capacity to accommodate the quants of development considered in section 4.'
On Saturday the 12th of March 2016, I went along to the Mariposa Exhibition being run by their agents Hard Hat in respect of the Panshanger Aerodrome development in association with the HCA (Homes and Community Agency).
I asked the senior person there 10 questions on the planned development and how that ties in to local and cross border infrastructure.
Unfortunately the chap was not aware that as of October 2015 it became law to use SUDS in all developments; suds is 'Sustainable Urban Drainage Systems' and also Portable Water has to be used, and that basically means making what is drunk or flushed more water efficient, by at least 25%, so the use of suds ties in with water efficiency; they go hand in hand. The chap thought the water would be managed as water run-off in to the water course, which was permissible before the law changed last year.
What they will have to do is separate the sewer water from the rain water, sewerage goes in a sewer but rain water has to be recycled back in to the proposed development so that it can be used as toilet water; for heating and garden use and to do that they will have to have a an on-site Water Tank that has the capacity to hold up to 30 Million Litres of water. Portable Water is by way of Water Meters; every home will have to have one and the 2009 WCS expects people to drink less and use less water in the following years to enable Rye Meads to stay afloat.
Their intention is to build 1000 houses and that being the reason behind knocking down all of the hangars on not just the South side but the North side of Panshanger Aerodrome.
As for connecting to the sewer, he felt that they would connect to the normal one being his answer and the normal WwTW will be used.
The Portable Water that can be used in properties is 110,000m3 / day and although this is in the 2009 WCS it was first agreed back around 2000 in AMP 3, we are currently in AMP 6; AMP periods are in blocks of 5 years (AMP is Asset Management Period. which runs alongside the water companies similar patterns).
My parting comments were that this development cannot go ahead as the sewer network has insufficient capacity for it and that the WGC Southern Outfall, is full. Water cannot fully go in to the local water courses as that will cause Flooding to Hertford as they have 3 separate rivers meeting there; this was something the chap was not aware of.
I plan to oppose the Local Plan & Private Development of Panshanger Aerodrome.
Holwell Hyde Heritage
Ab Initio - Verimus Calum