River residents to see cleaner water

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SEWAGE works that deal with waste from 830,000 people are to get a £78m upgrade as part of plans to improve water quality in a river often regarded as one of the region’s worst polluted.

Yorkshire Water said its project at the Blackburn Meadows waste water plant, beside the M1 motorway and Sheffield’s Meadowhall shopping centre, would produce big improvements on the River Don.

Engineers said new processes would reduce ammonia levels in the water, improving the 70-mile river from its source above the city to its confluence with the River Ouse in Goole.

Improvements will also be made to pumping stations and overflow systems reducing the risk of flooding during heavy rainfall such as that seen in summer 2007.

Kevin Smith, Yorkshire Water’s project manager, said the works date back to the late 1800s and added: “This iconic works is nestled right in the heart of Sheffield’s industrial waterfront, and like many works in the area, it has to move with the times.

“We are significantly changing the face of Blackburn Meadows to create a much cleaner, healthier environment for residents and riverlife alike.”