Severn Trent have signed a £100 million contract to build a new water treatment works that will help provide up to an additional 89 million litres of drinking water per day to the region, helping mitigate issues with water scarcity as the UK faces hotter summers through climate change, along with population growth.

A major project to secure water supplies for the future has taken a giant leap towards completion after a £100m contract was signed recently to build a state-of-the-art water treatment facility.     

Severn Trent, as part of its £566 million Green Recovery Programme, signed the contract with MWH Treatment to build the new facility called Witches Oak Water Treatment Works, near to its existing Church Wilne site – it is the highest value contract for an individual project Severn Trent has signed in AMP7.     

The new water treatment works will help provide up to an additional 89 million litres of drinking water per day to the region and will use innovative ceramic membrane technology provided by Nijhuis Saur Industries, that is currently in use in only one other large-scale treatment works in the country. 

When completed in 2025, the works will help ensure customers have a more secure and resilient supply for the future, helping mitigate issues with water scarcity as the UK faces hotter summers through climate change, along with population growth.         

The project will also see Severn Trent pre-treat water by using floating wetlands – this will help provide a more sustainable and nature-based treatment process whilst also bringing significant improvements in biodiversity.      

Chris Wand, Green Recovery Programme Director at Severn Trent said: “We’re delighted to work with MWH Treatment on this project, working collaboratively and delivering solutions to ensure our customers have a reliable water supply during the longer, hotter and drier summers we’ve been experiencing. 

“While it is still important to save water and look after our natural resources, this project will also be less carbon intensive than other traditional solutions. We’re looking forward to completing the build of this wonderful facility at Church Wilne and seeing the positive impact it will have for customers across our region.”     

Richard Thomson, the Project Director at MWH Treatment for Witches Oak Water Treatment Works, said: “MWH Treatment is excited to work with long-term client Severn Trent on a project which will deliver crucial water security for approximately 224,000 households.   

“A project such as this requires an investment in innovation and a commitment to real collaboration to ensure the project thoroughly integrates design and construction to the highest health and safety standards across the projects supply chain. We will facilitate this collaborative innovation by applying our Digital Delivery Tools including digital surveying, interactive visualisations, intelligent 3D models, rehearsals, and digital field management.”  

Severn Trent has today launched Wavemakers, a brand-new annual ideas challenge that’s seeking to nurture talents and create innovation in the community.

The project, that’s been especially created to find unique and innovative ideas in the world of water, will turn to local talent to help develop new ideas that could be rolled out across the Midlands.

The first round of Wavemakers will give potential future innovators, aged 16+, the opportunity to develop ideas on how to reuse and/or save water, and in return could potentially see one lucky participant rewarded with either a one-year university course or £2,000 cash-prize towards supporting their development.

Richard Powell, Innovation Manager at Severn Trent, said: “We’re really excited to be launching Wavemakers, as we believe that working collaboratively is the best way to create innovative ideas that have the potential to change the lives of individuals within our communities.”

“We all have a duty to do our bit by saving water and by looking after it, so that’s why we’re inviting members of our communities to help us on this mission, as well as investing in their potential.”

The Wavemakers challenge is ideal for those who are passionate about making a difference and brimming with ideas on how to achieve that. All applicants will get access to online training and resources from Severn Trent, which include project management fundamentals, budgeting, finance support and business development tools.

If shortlisted, applicants will also get the chance to team up with local university partners across the Severn Trent region and design their innovations over six-weeks. Alongside benefiting from a mentorship programme with Severn Trent.

Richard adds: “Our team of Innovation experts are constantly working hard to explore new innovative trials and test out the latest gadgets, but we also want to hear from you! We’d really love to see as many innovative, and different ideas as possible, that could help change the way we look after water. We know our communities are brimming with talent, so we want to work together.’’

The Wavemakers aims to empower the communities it serves to rethink its water use, live more sustainably and develop innovations that will benefit their local areas.

As well as looking to innovation, Severn Trent is also taking a leading role in the Midlands with a series of ambitious programmes that will address water scarcity, boost biodiversity, and enhance the environment through its £566m Green Recovery programme that includes creating a brand-new water supply to boost resilience of water supplies across its region.

Applications for Wavemakers can be submitted via the Severn Trent Water website from 1st April until Sunday 8th May .

For more information, please visit: