Helping Hastings tackle sewer blockages
Southern Water and the Clean Seas Please group are helping people in Hastings to improve bathing water quality in the area. Recently, the two groups set up a stand in the town’s Priory Meadow shopping centre to highlight the problems caused by products like wet wipes and fat, oil and grease – and they’re holding a community day later this month on 29 November, as they report here.
Wet wipes and other items that are often wrongly flushed away down the lavatory, combine with cooking oils inside sewers and cause blockages. This can lead to wastewater backing up into homes or polluting roads and watercourses which lead to the sea.
Last month nearly 21 tons of non-biodegradable items had to be removed from the town’s treatment works and so far this year, there have been almost 80 fat-related blockages in Hastings.
You can help reduce blockages by only flushing the three Ps – pee, poo and paper. Everything else should go in the bin.
To highlight the issue, Southern Water and Clean Seas Please are holding a fun day at Bridge Community Centre in Priory Road from 10.30am to 2.30pm on Saturday 29 November.
Steve Williams, Network Protection and Enforcement Officer for Southern Water, who will be there on the day, says: “Clean Seas Please are a great bunch of people with a real passion for making a difference in their community, so we’re delighted to continue working with them to promote our Pain in the Drain campaign.
“At the fun day, people will get the chance to have their photo taken as they teeter over the edge of our 3D artwork, be shown how to make healthy fish and chips and pick up freebies to help them reduce the risk of blockages in their own homes.”
The initiative comes as Southern Water works with the Environment Agency and Hastings Borough Council on other sources of pollution, in an attempt to help Hastings meet tough new European standards for bathing water. The company is helping the council identify illegal connections of wastewater pipes from homes into the surface water system, as they are a potential cause of contamination.
Jan Cutting from Clean Seas Please says: “While Southern Water, Hastings Borough Council and the Environment Agency are working together to try to ensure Hastings meets tougher standards for bathing water next year, there are simple things we can all do to help keep our seas clean.
“These include disposing of fat, oil and grease in the bin rather than pouring them down the sink or drain and checking that our wastewater pipes are correctly plumbed. Doing this will make an impact on our sewer system and stop Hastings being a Pain in the Drain.
“We greatly value our partnership with Southern Water and its support for our community engagement project and look forward to welcoming people to the fun day on November 29.”
Fun Day Bridge Community Centre, 361 Priory Rd, Hastings TN34 3NW, 10.30am to 2.30pm, Saturday 29 November. Tel 01424 433611.
For more information about the dangers fat, oil and grease cause our sewers, visit www.southernwater.co.uk/paininthedrain.
Or contact: Samuel Underwood, 01903 272343