UK ceramic membrane water project moves ahead

PLYMOUTH, UK The UK’s first large-scale ceramic membrane drinking water treatment plant is on track with 300 days of construction complete.

The £60 million Mayflower Water Treatment Works is being designed by Dutch technology company PWNT for utility South West Water.

Tested at a prototype facility from 2013 to 2015, the technology uses suspended ion exchange with a resin regeneration system, inline coagulation and ceramic membrane microfiltration.

It is the first time that this combined technology has been used in the UK.

Mayflower Water Treatment Works will replace the outdated treatment works at Crownhill in Plymouth, which was built in the 1950s and is reaching the end of its useful life.

UK ceramic membrane water project moves ahead

The development is scheduled to become operational in September 2018, with the existing Crownhill works retiring from service a few months later.

The project is South West Water’s biggest single capital investment in its 2015-20 business plan.

Stephen Bird, managing director of utility South West Water, said: “We’re approaching the halfway point of the construction timetable and while there is plenty more to do, real progress is being made and the team have been working tirelessly in all weathers to ensure we’re on target to finish the main building work by next Spring.”

Firms named for £434m northern highways framework

Severn Trent looks at new delivery models for £4bn programme for AMP7 and beyond

Severn Trent Water is considering its strategy for above and below ground capital works, services and goods for future regulatory periods including AMP7 from large capital projects to smaller scale repair and maintenance.
The programme value is expected to be up to £4 billion depending on the size of the regulatory cycles included.

The water company is now exploring a number of different delivery models ranging from turnkey solutions to sourcing strategy for materials, plant, equipment and labour.

Severn Trent is interested in hearing companies who operate in these markets, including:

Design and construction or construction;
Material supply e.g. supply only and supply and installation of plant;
Labour supply;
Construction equipment supply and/or operation.
The utility is expecting to issue a contract notice in May 2017.



A new app is aiming to cut young driver deaths by offering rewards such as pizza and days out for safe driving.

The free Shotgun app, launched by insurer Direct Line, uses GPS technology to track routes and monitor braking and speed on each journey.

The app scores different elements of the user’s driving before giving feedback and allowing them to earn points with brands such as Pizza Express, Starbucks and Virgin Experience Days based on overall performance.

Shotgun lasts up until users clock up 1,000 miles – typically six months on the road.

In 2015, 402 teenage car drivers were killed or seriously injured on the UK’s roads, equating to seven 17 to 19-year-olds a week, according to Direct Line’s own accident statistics.

Direct Line said its data had shown that one in four teenage drivers will crash in their first year on the road.

It said the app is not an insurance product and is available to all new drivers between the ages of 17 and 25 regardless of the insurer they have chosen.

Kerry Chilvers, brands director at Direct Line, said: “There are over half a million teenagers on our roads and every week more than seven of them are killed or suffer life-changing injuries. These are figures we have to change.

“We want Shotgun to act as a new driver’s personal wingman beside them, to support them through those important first 1,000 miles of driving.

“We know that scare tactics don’t work for this audience, who believe they’re invincible, so we worked with behavioural psychologists to develop a solution which incentivises good driving and the leader board element appeals to competitive natures.”

In 2011, The Co-operative launched a cashback reward on its insurance for young drivers who kept to speed limits, avoided excessive harsh braking and acceleration and took corners carefully with the help of “Smartbox” telematics technology to monitor how a car is driven. 

Irish Water signs contract on €5.5m Co. Monaghan water mains project

Irish Water has signed a contract for the delivery of a significant water project in Co. Monaghan which will ensure badly needed improvements in water services for consumers in Monaghan Town and Clones.

The €5.5 million investment by Irish Water in Co. Monaghan will be delivered by GMC Utilities Group Limited in partnership with Monaghan County Council.

The investment includes the replacement and rehabilitation of 9.1 km of aging watermains in the Monaghan Town (4.8km) and Clones (4.3km) areas. The project also includes the replacement of 430 customer service connections and 134 common backyard services as well as the removal of any lead pipework encountered on the public-side of the water distribution network.

The total amount of water which will be saved as a result of the replacement of old watermains that are prone to leakage and regular bursts and which cause interruptions to supply is estimated at 54 million litres of water per year.

The works are scheduled to commence in March and will take approximately 18 months to complete.

Commenting on the investment Declan Cawley, Irish Water’s Water Network Regional Lead for the North West Region, said:

“This investment will greatly improve the water infrastructure for residents and business owners in the Monaghan and Clones areas. The replacement of these aging watermains that are prone to frequent bursts will improve the security of supply to customers and will also ensure that the existing and future residential and commercial development needs of the town are served. Irish Water is committed to reducing network leakage to less than 38% by 2021 and this investment will help us to meet this target.”



Final phase of £192 million A556 dual carriageway work unveiled

Find out more about updated plans to improve the A63 in Hull

Public are invited to find out more about proposals to improve almost a mile of the A63 in Hull.

Motorists, hauliers and local residents are invited to find out more about proposals to improve almost a mile of the A63 in Hull, reducing congestion, and improving the city’s east to west links.

Two public consultation exhibitions are taking place at the Mercure Royal Station Hotel later this week. Highways England is seeking views on the A63 proposals and there will be an opportunity to speak to the project team.

The exhibitions will take place on:

  • Friday 27 January 12.30pm – 8pm
  • Saturday 28 January 10am – 4pm

Highways England’s plans to upgrade a major route running through the city of Hull, went on show to the public last week. The Statutory consultation period launched on Monday 16 January and runs until Monday 13 February.

The section between Ropery Street and the Market Place/Queen Street junction carries around 45,000 vehicles per day and as a result, the road suffers from congestion, particularly at peak times.

Highways England project manager Jimmy Holmes said:

We are committed to improving the A63 through Hull and would really like people to get involved in the consultation event and give us their feedback, particularly on the new information which is now available.

The A63 Castle Street scheme will improve access to the Port of Hull by widening some sections of the road, upgrading the Mytongate junction and a bridge over the A63.

I understand people may have felt they have already done this but things have changed and it is vital we have the most up to date views available.

Highways England last consulted on the scheme in 2013, since that time we have been developing the scheme further and completing additional environmental and traffic assessments.

Councillor Martin Mancey, Portfolio Holder for Transport at Hull City Council, said:

This is another key step in Hull’s changing fortunes, and the upgrade of this arterial route will enhance the city’s connectivity to key routes such as the M62, which is crucial for the city’s position as a key player in the Northern Powerhouse.

Once completed, I anticipate it will also contribute to a significant reduction in traffic congestion elsewhere in the city, caused by traffic currently queuing to join Castle Street from the City Centre and by those using alternative routes to avoid the congestion on Castle Street.

We’ve had significant private sector investment in the city and have welcomed global businesses like Siemens to Hull, creating well paid jobs for local people, and making Hull one of the fastest growing economies in the North. Coupled with the capital investment in our cultural and visitor infrastructure, perceptions of the city are changing and both public and business confidence and aspiration are at an all-time high.

We want to continue this momentum, and this can only be made possible by developing a transport network that is fit-for-purpose. 

London congestion charge should be scrapped, according to a new study

Severn Trent Water awards phosphorus removal contract

Major plans to widen main road comes as part of £1 billion scheme

Major works to widen the A12 are due to start within three years, to help connect people across the county.

The scheme is part of a £1.1billion investment in East of England roads which will begin before 2020.

As part of the plans, the dual-carriageway is set to be widened between Chelmsford and the A120 junction in Essex.

Highways England on Monday (January 23) will launch a public consultation on the plans.

Highways England Chief Executive Jim O’Sullivan said: “(The improvements) are much needed by the half a million drivers who use them every day.

“Each scheme has been developed by working with local partners and through this consultation we are welcoming views on them.

“I encourage anyone with an interest in these roads – whether they drive on them, live near them or depend on them for trade – to get involved.”

The A12 scheme, which will be completed alongside improvements in Suffolk, Norfolk and Cambridgeshire, was initially announced in December 2014.