DIG Article for Winter 2022 HNews

Pumping Station

The pumping station is not the prettiest of buildings, but it’s been a part of the village since the sixties serving an essential function and we must all pass it regularly without giving it a second thought. The building houses a large borehole some 250 feet deep and for many years pumped drinking water from deep in the chalk. It no longer does, but the whine of machinery can still be heard close to the building. It is understood that the pumping equipment serves to pump drinking water from the direction of Prestwood up the hill to Naphill and beyond.

Last winter we reported that Affinity Water had visited to site at the pumping station and had agreed to conduct CCTV checks on the two culverts that run under the site. This is needed to ensure that they are clear and able to carry drainage water from the course of the winterbourne that runs across the road from Buildbase, and also the stream and road drainage water that runs in the ditch along Valley Road.

Unfortunately, little has happened since then. We have recently escalated this matter and a further site visit has been made and action has been promised. It’s not urgent work, but the sort that should be carried out on a routine basis to prevent a sudden crisis happening.

Other Drains and Sewer Items

Trees Road

The bottom of Trees Road continues to provide a headache for the residents of the road as the drainage grids at the bottom of the road block up very quickly following heavy rain. Loose gravel and stones rapidly accumulate at the bottom and make it hazardous for drivers turning off Valley Road into Trees Road.

The DIG have approached Bucks CC via the FixMyStreet website and appealed for help this year with clearing the grids and drains. The problem here, of course, is that Trees Road is unadopted and the two road drains and the grids are not the responsibility of the council. We are glad to report that the council have agreed to do this and say they will attend to this when they are next conducting operations in our area.

It would be great if in the meantime the Trees Road WhatsApp group could continue to clear the gravel and stones at the foot of the road.

The Culvert from the Harrow to Deeters

We had concerns about the course of the winterbourne that runs from the Harrow down to Deeters. As far as we are aware, this section of pipework had not been examined for some years. Following a request to Bucks CC, it has now been checked and is reported to be silt free.

Thames Water DWMP

Thames Water provided an update this summer to their draft Drainage and Wastewater Management Plan. This is a 25 year plan covering a vast area, of which we are a small part. So, while we are not able to report on significant details for the Valley, we are able to say that the following is planned for the Little Marlow area, of which we are a part:

  • Upgrade to the Little Marlow Sewage Treatment plant
  • Improved monitoring of sewage risk areas
  • Identifying of  areas where groundwater infiltrates into the sewage network and then carrying out sealing of tops and lining of sewers to prevent infiltration

When the final plan is completed we hope to be able to report some more detail.

DIG Organisation and Constitution

At the October AGM, it was decided to review and simplify the DIG organisation and constitution in light of us being fully integrated with HVRA. This has now been done and a new Terms of Reference document has been produced. It has been distributed to the DIG members and is placed on the document page in the DIG section of the HVRA website.

Paul Woodford

HVRA Drainage Improvement Group