Water firm vows action over issues with pumping site

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RESIDENTS in an area plagued by problems with a pumping station have been promised changes will be made.

People met with Southern Water bosses to raise ongoing concerns about noise, pollution, vibrations and smells, caused by the diesel and electric pumps at Eastney Pumping Station.

Bernard Hartley, of Henderson Road, who called the meeting, has experienced problems first hand.

He lives in a mobile home inside Henderson Park, Henderson Road, Eastney.

Mr Hartley said: ‘I have lived there for 15 years and for about 12 years I have experienced problems.

‘The smell from fumes is just horrendous – it gets in your food and drink.

‘I have got cracks all along my walls.

‘I’ve had to redecorate and get new furniture because of the vibrations causing damage to my property.’

And John Stevenson, who is chairman of the Henderson Park Residents Association, said: ‘We have been experiencing a lot of noise pollution and general disruption.

‘We have written to Southern Water many times about concerns of damage to homes and disturbance.

‘Up until now Southern Water refused point blank to accept any meeting.

‘So we’re grateful to the person who organised this.’

About 50 people turned out for the two-hour meeting, which took place in Eastney Community Centre, Bransbury Road, Eastney.

Stewart Garrett, operations manager at Southern Water, said: ‘Our new station, which was built 18 months ago, is having some operational problems.

‘We have a state-of-the-art chemical scrubber to treat the odour.

‘I will have to look at the operations to see what is happening.

‘I will also find out how the other issues can be resolved.

‘Our customers are really important to us and we are trying hard to resolve the issues.

‘The meeting went very well and we want to make sure we do the right thing by our customers.

‘There will be action taken to resolve what we can.’

Southern Water has promised to look into how the problems can be resolved and will meet with residents in six months time to provide an update.

The water firm built a backup pumping station costing £10m in Bransbury Park last June.

It was built to help protect Portsmouth from flooding during severe weather.

Plans are also being drawn up to create a second pumping station in Burgoyne Road, Southsea, to relieve pressure on the Eastney site.

Currently Southern Water is awaiting for permission and funding from water regulators Ofwat.