It was discovered last week that the private sewage treatment plant
servicing 40 dwellings has collapsed, needing complete replacement. At
an emergency meeting this came as a great shock to most residents.
Does anyone have any idea what such a plant would cost to install in
Based on no experience of these systems at all, this one seems to cater
for 30-600 population, which might be oversize for 40 houses
£11K plus whatever earthworks, plumbing and wiring are required.
The prices on that website are considerably less than the "rough
quote" obtained by the residents' management committee. However, this
is in the very earliest stages of discovery.
Thanks a lot for the link. Just as an indicator, the quote was in the
region of £100,000. It was stated that the work HAS to be done by a
company approved by the environment agency.
replying to MM, Iggy wrote:
Why not ask the people who are going to do it? And how could you possibly
complain about or try to negogiate a price here? The old has to be removed as
well as possibly a mountain of contamination, then new fill goes in and then and
only then does the new plant go in. It's more than a lot of work and you still
have permit and inspection costs atop materials and labor. Even 300,000 or less
than 10,000 per dwelling would sound absolutely credible.
That's a bit on the pessimistic side. This is well within the range a
leaseholder of a flat might have to find (or borrow) in order to
maintain the common property. And any house with adjacent open land has
the possibillty of putting in their own sewage disposal arrangements if
the whole group can't get their act together. This would probably be
substantially more expensive though.
On Sun, 19 Nov 2017 23:42:51 +0000, firstname.lastname@example.org (Roger Hayter)
They would not get planning permission. People have already enquired
several years ago and the authorities state that there is a communal
private sewage treatment plant for the estate and that's that.
replying to MM, Iggy wrote:
Very good, thank you for the clarification. However, you might want to start
talking to Lawyers, The Health Dept., County Engineering, etc. These things
don't just happen, there was abundant negligence by someone and most especially
by the Gov't Agencies named. No homeowners should be short changed here for
Gov't inaction, fraud and criminal negligence.
You are absolutely correct in those comments. Residents assumed that
what the management committee was tasked to do, was being done. This
goes back several years. However, it has become known that the
original installation was allegedly carried out inexpertly. First, the
tank in the ground is supposed to be supported on ALL sides by a
concrete barrier or containment. This was not, or only partially,
implemented, thus causing the tank (fiberglass) to start collapsing
Second, the spec was allegedly not correct in that the original design
provided for ONE tank, but "someone" (surveyor? local authority?)
decided after construction had commenced that a SECOND tank was
required as well.
Third, the company who supplied the plant has ceased trading.
Fourth, the company that built the estate and all amenities, including
the private sewage treatment plant (PSTP) is allegedly still trading.
To take all those involved to court would cost a fortune. Probably
well in excess of the £100,000 rough quote for a new PSTP. It would
also take forever to go through the courts, with appeals and so on,
while in the meantime the estate could be left high and (literally)
dry with no sewage treatment for 120 persons (estimated).
So it is a complete and utter shambles and I cannot see how on earth
it is going to be resolved. The Environment Agency and other agencies
are *extremely* strict about sewage and groundwater contamination,
However, this cannot be the only PSTP to have failed and I'm trying to
discover which ones may have anywhere in the country and what was done
about it. There are just in Lincolnshire around 4,000 PSTPs of one
size of another, because Lincs is a large, very rural county.
Further note: Five years ago Anglian Water "adopted" the sewage
treatment of a whole village in the neighbourhood. All the dwellings
and farms at the time had their own cesspits/septic tanks. Anglian
Water constructed a new sewage treatment plant (size of a bungalow on
a plot of about half an acre) and dug up the single, main road through
the village to put all properties on to mains drainage. The work took
over a year, as I recall.
Residents here have always hoped that AW would do the same here, but I
wrote to AW several years ago and their reply was that we live too far
from any of their mains sewers, so it ain't gonna happen.
Please bear in mind that I am in no way involved in the management of
this shambles, but am endeavouring to find out on my own as much as I
can as an individual resident who has religiously paid the £400 annual
service charge every year. Obviously, all residents have been
extremely complacent over the years and believed everything they were
told. I think even now not all residents appreciate the dire situation
If you have any further suggestions, feel free to mention them!
Depending upon the site available and the drain layout, it might be
possible to install the new unit first, divert the drains into it, then
worry about the old one. That would minimise disruption and you might
find that the old unit doesn't need to be removed, although it would
probably need to be filled in for safety.
Good idea, but what seems sensible to you or me, it doesn't
necessarily follow that the council, health & safety, the Environment
Agency, or other bodies would see it the same way. You must know that
councils up and down the land tear buildings down if they haven't
received the proper planning permission. I don't know whether such
bodies have become more flexible in recent years as I, thank God, have
never had to deal with them. But, let's face it, such bodies do
attract a certain number of pettifogging officials who relish the
chance to be bloody-minded.
From a practical POV the land area available should provide plenty of
space for your suggestion (new unit, then fill in old hole). The land
area outwith the PSTP is currently grassed over.
On the odd occasion when I have had dealings with the Environment
Agency, their inspectors have been fairly flexible about solutions,
provided that the solution suggested achieves the final result they want.
Well, that's some good news at least. Thanks.
Actually, I thought of something associated with the problem: Just
suppose the sewage unit fails completely, are there *temporary*
portable units available? When my heating oil tank failed in 2015 my
heating engineer pumped the 1000 litres into an IBC temporarily until
the new bunded tank was installed.
These people offer sewage and waste water treatment hire:
I expect there will be others. Alternatively, you could hire Portaloos
or temporary wash / shower blocks (also made by Portaloo).
You mean, like at a field event? Yeah, that might really concentrate
the minds of the late payers! Nothing like a row of Portaloos to bring
the price of property down! The pic will probably be in all the local
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