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Thames Water fined over sewage leak

Thames Water has been fined more than £27,000 for causing the pollution of a river in Surrey

The incident saw a pipe burst in a field behind Walton Lane sewage pumping station in Weybridge and flooded the field with sewage, which then entered the Engine River.

The company admitted the offence at Staines Magistrates Court on Friday May, 24.

The company was fined £18,000, ordered to pay costs of £9,764.15 and a victim surcharge of £15.

Thames Water was advised by the Environment Agency to contain the spilt sewage with sandbags and removal of sludge from the top of the river.

However, the court heard how Thames Water did not make enough effort to contain the pollution and affecting over 1.2 kilometres of the river.

Rivers and water courses are an important part of the environment; they offer an essential resource for wildlife, fisheries and recreation. It is distressing when incidents such as this one occur and cause fairly significant environmental damage, with several hundred fish killed by this sewage spill.

The prosecution and fining of Thames Water sends a clear message to other companies that if you fail in your environmental responsibilities you may be prosecuted.

– Marie De Viell, Environment Agency Solicitor

Fobney Island Reserve opens

Fobney Island's new wildlife haven Credit: Environment Agency

A wildlife haven has openedafter a revamp - thanks to a £500,000 facelift.

Fobney Island in Reading has seen rough grassland transformed into a wetlandhaven for nature.

The Environment Agency joined forces withReading Borough Council, Thames Water and the Thames Rivers Trust to carry outthe work.

The renovation work carriedout included additional flood storage, a restored river channel, new viewingpoints and disability access.

Graham Scholey, EnvironmentAgency Conservation Technical Specialist, said: "This project will make areal difference to the diversity of wildlife at the site."

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