The purpose of this page is to explore any issues affecting the conservation of wildlife in our area i.e. from Portchester in the west north to Denmead, west to Chalton and south to the coast around Nutbourne Bay. If you are concerned about an issue that might interest other send me an e mail (click here). I will restrict topics to those affecting conservation and excluding those which are more amenity related.
Havant Thicket Water Storage Reservoir
Click on the map to see it full size.
Portsmouth Water plan to create a reservoir on land they own mainly south of Havant Thicket which is currently mainly low quality grass land. Thereare however a few bits of nice woodland including particularly the Avenue north of Staunton Country Park. The reservoir is thought to be needed to supply water in the years ahead as more industrial and residential development occurs in Hampshire Sussex and Surrey. There will also be effects on demand and the available supply due to global warming.
It is the latter which is at present under debate between Portsmouth water and OFWAT and has caused a hold up in the planning.
So far there have been very extensive public consultations and environmental studies carried out prior to any planning application. There will be loss of habitat for some reptiles, breeding lapwings that have recently colonised one of the fields that will be flooded and more worrying bats including some rarities.
There might be an issue over the flow of freshwater into Langstone Harbour. The reservoir will be filled by pumping water from the Havant and Bedhampton springs in the winter when usually there is a surplus flowing into the harbour. So far no clear evidence has been found to clarify the likely effects on the harbour.
The current situation is as follows - copied from a Portsmouth Water newsletter
FINAL WATER RESOURCES MANAGEMENT PLAN
The Secretary of State has given permission to Portsmouth Water to publish its Final Water Resources Management Plan subject to;
• Incorporating all previous changes made to the draft plan.
• The Company including a commitment to work with the Environment Agency and other stakeholders in conducting a further
review of the key assumptions which will be needed in time for the next Water Resources Management Plan (draft scheduled
The final plan was published on 2 September 2011 and sets out the key elements which will ensure that the Company is able to
continue to maintain supplies to customers for the next 25 years.
• A compulsory metering programme utilising automatic meter reading (AMR) technology over a 15 year period from 2015-2030.
• A programme of leakage savings delivering a 3Ml/d leakage reduction between 2015 and 2020.
• The construction of a Washwater Recovery Plant at Farlington Water Treatment Works in 2017/18.
• The development of Havant Thicket Winter Storage Reservoir (HTWSR) filled by surplus yield from the Company’s Havant and
Bedhampton Springs between 2025 and 2035
The Company has invited a number of stakeholders to join a group to promote better understanding and communication during
the preparation of the next plan. It is the intention to publish minutes of the group meetings and a newsletter giving an update
on the progress of the plan on the Company website.
More information, including a copy of the final plan, or a copy of a summary document, can be found by visiting
http://www.portsmouthwater.co.uk/home.aspx to find the link on our home page.
The Local Authorities have responsibilities under the various conservation designations covering the harbour but do little or nothing to discharge these responsibilities other than through the harbour board. Havant do maintain the oyster beds but these are currently assessed as 'unfavourable' i.e. they have failed to discharge their remit to get their SSSI into favourable by 2010. This is one of the very few sites not shown as improving.
The threat originated from Portsmouth Council lead by Councillor Vernon-Jackson (A member of the harbour board!). Havant councillors have been persuaded to join with Portsmouth in making the proposed cuts.
The harbour board's environment officer has done some great work recently e.g. in striving for fishermen to avoid dredging eel grass beds and getting CAA to control low flying over the harbour. We need this, and more to conserve the harbour.
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