Portsmouth Water says public feedback over £120m Havant reservoir will help shape proposals

A WATER company has said public feedback over plans for a new £120m reservoir will help shape its proposals.

By Steve Deeks
Wednesday, 1st July 2020, 11:17 am
Updated Wednesday, 1st July 2020, 1:48 pm

Portsmouth Water has responded after hundreds of people had their say on the Havant Thicket Reservoir scheme.

Under plans, the reservoir will hold 8.7 billion litres of water and supply up to 21m litres of water each day.

Public support for a new wetlands and a reservoir access road, as well as questions over the environmental impact were among the key issues raised by residents during the consultation.

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An aerial CGI image of what Portsmouth Water's Havant Thicket reservoir could look like after construction.

Plans earmarked would protect the county’s world-famous chalk streams, secure future water supplies for the south east and provide a new green leisure facility to benefit communities and wildlife in Havant.

Portsmouth Water provided a series of webinars and created a virtual exhibition for people to visit online amid the coronavirus lockdown.

Bob Taylor, chief executive officer at Portsmouth Water, said: ‘It’s great that we’ve received a large amount of feedback on our proposals, more than 1,600 consultation responses in total.

‘We worked hard to make it easy for people to learn more about what we want to deliver and have their say during our consultation, whether that was online, by phone or post.

‘We would like to say a big thank you to everyone who took the time to give their views. What people have told us will help shape the planning applications we will submit to Havant Borough Council and East Hampshire District Council later this year.’

Responding to suggestions on the environmental impact, Mr Taylor said: ‘There were helpful comments on the options for the reservoir access road, the route for the reservoir pipeline that’s needed, the existing woodland on the site and our extensive plans for delivering an overall benefit to the environment.

‘For example, we’re committed to replanting and improving at least 110 hectares of woodland to create new and enhanced habitat – both on and around the reservoir site and further afield.’

Portsmouth Water is now assessing the feedback before publishing a consultation report in August.

The consultation highlights included the dedicated Havant Thicket Reservoir Facebook page seeing over 102,000 page views via the 25 consultation posts that were published.

Six public consultation webinars were held, with a total of 156 people taking part and 1,350 brochures were sent out to those in the community about the scheme.

Havant Thicket Reservoir is earmarked for a 160-hectare site between Staunton Country Park and Havant Thicket, which is owned by Portsmouth Water.

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