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Lib Dem leader joins Max to see (and smell) Cheltenham sewage dumping spot

Sir Ed Davey joined parliamentary candidate Max Wilkinson on a visit to one of the places where sewage is dumped in the River Chelt.

The pair donned wellies to wade through foul-smelling stagnant water next to a storm overflow drain in an area accessible to the public and animals.

The spot is one of three places where raw sewage can legally be dumped into watercourses in Cheltenham.

Max said: “The stench was disgusting – it’s hard to believe that the government allows this to happen.

“Water companies are still allowed to make hundreds of millions of pounds in profit while dumping sewage in our rivers.  It’s outrageous that last year Conservative MPs voted against a proposal to put an end to sewage dumping.”

Max’s campaign for a sewage tax on the profits of water companies to fund the end of sewage dumping has won the support of hundreds of residents.  You can sign it here.

St Peter’s councillors Victoria Atherstone and David Willingham also joined Sir Ed for the visit to share their experiences and those of local residents.

Data from 2021, compiled by The Rivers Trust, shows the extent of sewage dumping by Severn Trent:

  • The River Chelt, near Charlton Kings
    • 139 times for a total of 2511 hours
  • The River Chelt at St Peter’s Park
    • 17 times for a total of 21 hours
  • Hatherley Brook south of the A40, in Benhall
    • Nine times for a total of 10 hours

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