Thames Gateway Plan for Clean Water to be Built by Interserve Consortium

Interserve, in consortium with the Spanish company Acciona and Atkins Water, has won the contract to build the Thames Gateway Water Treatment Plant for Thames Water. The value of the work to Interserve will be in the region of £50 million. The consortium will work as an integrated team to deliver the £200m project, expected to be complete by late 2009. Work has now re-commenced after a planning appeal made by ex-Mayor of London Ken Livingston was rejected by the Government and new Mayor Boris Johnson decided not to pursue a further legal challenge.

The plant is located on the north bank of the Thames in the London Borough of Newham. It will be the first in London to abstract brackish water from the tidal Thames, with capacity to supply up to 140 million litres of water a day - enough for 400,000 households. Using the latest desalination technology it will deliver fresh water to one of Thames Water’s existing reservoirs in north-east London, ready for distribution to consumers across the area.

The main purpose of the scheme is to relieve pressure on other water sources across the capital, especially in extended dry periods. The project is part of Thames Water’s response to the effects that London's rapidly-growing population will have on demand for water and the increased risk of restrictions in future droughts if additional sources are not secured. As desalination is a more energy-intensive process than conventional water treatment, Thames Water has committed to running the plant only when essential and to providing 100 per cent of the power needed to run it from renewable energy.

Adrian Ringrose, Interserve’s Chief Executive, said, “Interserve has a long and successful association with Thames Water and we are very aware of the key strategic part this plant will play in providing its customers with a long-term, high-quality water supply. We welcome this opportunity to use our expertise in helping Thames to ensure that it continues to meet its commitments to the people of London.”

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