SuDS Desilting and Maintenance

Project Description

Sustainable Drainage Systems are the modern day engineered equivalent of a healthy catchment in the built environment. While traditionally water was quickly drained to the sea, we now understand that water is precious and therefore flow is slowed and attenuated. Water is regarded as an asset and managed at a catchment level.

SuDS are part of a sustainable future, and form part of a modern vocabulary of terms such as working with nature, ecosystem services, climate change resilience and carbon sequestering. Exo Environmental has a unique experience of managing SuDS and SuDS maintenance knowhow. Although maintenance is generally included in the design, the actual maintenance activities on site are often less than optimal. This can be caused by problems with the design or the construction, problems with communication or lack of funds.

Exo Environmental can help to review and update existing maintenance plans, or compile new plans. These plans can be part of a handover to local authority or on-going maintenance. In addition, permitting, tender documentation and site supervision is offered.

At Great Western Park in Didcot, Oxfordshire, Exo Environmental worked with the client and the contractor to ensure a smooth handover of the constructed SuDS to the local authority.

“The Ecology Consultancy undertook protected species surveys of the Great Western Park SuDS ponds, to make sure that maintenance dredging did not inadvertently cause an offence under wildlife legislation. A scoping survey showed that water voles and great crested newts were present locally and that both ponds were suitable habitat, therefore there was a reasonable possibility of them being present. A direct survey for water voles and an environmental DNA (‘eDNA’) test for great crested newts were both negative, therefore it was concluded works could go-ahead without need to mitigate for protected species.

It was a pleasure working with William and Exo Environmental on this project. They had a pro-active approach to wildlife issues, which is always important for reducing the risk of ‘unexpected’ discoveries and delays once works commence. Throughout, they were always efficient and had a methodical approach, with consequent benefits to project delivery and the client.”

Dr Graham Hopkins, Principal Ecologist, The Ecology Consultancy

Project Details

  • AuthorWilliam Coulet
  • ClientHarbour Clean
  • DateSeptember 2015
  • CatergoryDredging