It has become a grimly familiar sight – and smell.
Every time heavy rain falls on York, a slick of foul-smelling sewage floats down the River Ouse in the city centre.
After years of complaints, Yorkshire Water is now taking steps to reduce this extremely unpleasant occurrence.
The company is spending £170K to improve two storm overflows in York.
These are the overflow under the Boots store on Coney Street, which discharges to the Ouse, and the Fishergate overflow on Fishergate, which discharges into the Foss.
Yorkshire Water project manager Martin Ineson said: “In York, many of the discharges are due to the river flowing into the sewer network, as we experienced in recent weeks, following a prolonged period of heavy rain.
“The work we are carrying out on Coney Street and Fishergate will limit these instances and reduce overflows into both the Foss and Ouse.
“As well as these projects, we are planning more investment in York’s overflows in the next two years and beyond to further reduce discharges.”
Work on the two sites will include:
- altering the operation of the Coney Street overflow, meaning greater flows of wastewater would be required before overflows occur.
- upgrades to stop the river inundating the sewer and to prevent blockages, which can also cause an increase in discharges to the watercourse from Fishergate.
Yorkshire Water says its modelling indicates the current work could half discharges from the Coney Street overflow and reduce overflows by approximately 10% at Fishergate.