Yorkshire Water backtrack on claims Oak Beck network "too expensive to fix"

Sewage at Oak Beck
Sewage at Oak Beck

Yorkshire Water has backtracked over claims that the sewer network around Oakdale Beck is not fit for purpose and would be too expensive to fix.

In May, New Park residents raised concerns after with Yorkshire Water and the Environment Agency following the ongoing issue of waste and sewer water polluting the beck.

Coun Matthew Webber (Lib Dem, New Park) also complained to Yorkshire Water about the sewage in Oak Beck after residents contacted him.

However, in one employee’s email, Coun Webber was told that the sewer network was “not fit for purpose” and that any resolution would cost “several million pounds”.

Coun Webber admitted he was disappointed with the company’s response, especially after being in the email told that a resolution was something “no stake holder or Yorkshire Water company can afford”.

The company has since been in touch with Coun Webber to explain the situation and offered him a meeting to discuss how the asset works.

In a statement to the Advertiser, Yorkshire Water admitted there were faults with the sewage network and that it would be “very difficult” to rectify all the issues.

However, they explained that they make sure they’re there within two hours to deal with any issue when they learn of an incident.

A Yorkshire Water spokesperson said: “The sewer network in the area is very complicated; underground springs enter the pipes and there are several pipes that have been wrongly connected to the network.

“This means the network is full of water that shouldn’t necessarily be there The sewer overflow that enters Oak Beck is extraordinary so we have an ongoing management agreement with the Environment Agency.

“The Environment Agency regulate how we manage this difficult outfall and we report all incidents to them and review these in detail.”

Coun Webber said he welcomed the news that Yorkshire Water would look into the problem but said he would like to see “more proactive than reactive” work done.