The water supply in the Meppershall area is mostly taken from the ground, usually boreholes. The new pipeline will allow us to bring in water from other areas, which is better for the environment.
It will also reduce the number of homes and businesses relying on a single water supply.
The pipeline is just one part of an interconnected network of pipes we are constructing across the region, as set out in our Water Resources Management Plan.
We are currently carrying out archaeological surveys and ecological monitoring and expect to start our ground investigation work later this year.
We will share our planned route with you before we finalise our planning discussions with Central Bedfordshire Council.
Ground investigation means just that – we investigate the ground by making some holes, by digging or drilling, so we can see the conditions below the surface. It is the best way to understand a site to see if the conditions are suitable for a pipeline.
It will be followed, subject to agreement with the council planners, by pre-construction and enabling works, such as setting up compounds, protecting wildlife and limited removal of hedgerows.
The construction start date will be dependent on many factors, including the weather. We aim to start later this year or early 2022 and complete our work in 2023.
Once the construction gets underway, we will work hard to keep its impact to a minimum. We will follow good industry practice, mostly using open cut trenches. Where we need to minimise disruption, such as main roads and railways, we will use trenchless techniques - where we push the pipe through the ground.