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SUDSnet visit 15th April 2005

SUDSnet provides a UK-wide network for researchers, practitioners, agencies, developers and all those who are interested in Sustainable Urban Drainage Systems.

SUDSnet is funded by an EPSRC Network Grant and is held jointly by Coventry University and the Urban Water Technology Centre at the University of Abertay Dundee.

Twenty-six delegates from the national SUDSnet group travelled to Bournemouth & Poole to learn about the Bourne Stream sustainable drainage systems (SUDS).

The SUDS here are of particular interest to many people because they are a quite unique example of retro-fitting these more natural drainage techniques into a densely urbanised catchment, where space is at a premium and where traditional drainage had led to problems with pollution and flooding of the valley.

SUDSnet Visit 15.04.05 (click to enlarge)

Attendees included:

  • Development Officers from the Environment Agency in Blandford

  • SUDS practitioners from Cheltenham & Bath

  • Academics from Coventry University and the University of Portsmouth

  • Representatives of the Urban Water Technology Centre at the University of Abertay in Dundee

  • DEFRA (the government Department of Environment, Food & Rural Affairs)

  • Our own partners from Borough of Poole & Bournemouth Borough Council, English Nature & Dorset Wildlife Trust.

Above: Stuart Terry (Borough of Poole) explains his Alderney SUDS design to (among others) Dr. John Williams, School of Scienceand the Environment, University of Coventry

At 11.30 we all met at Bournemouth University where Stuart Terry (Borough of Poole) and Sarah (BSP Project Officer) gave a presentation that described the stream and its catchment, explained the various SUDS designs, and the results of our water quality monitoring.

After a buffet lunch (and just as it started to rain) we left by coach to visit the lagoons and wetland at Alderney the stream modification works at South Park Road, and the latest SUDS at Coy Pond Gardens.  Unfortunately there was no time to visit the Upper Gardens to discuss our ideas for that area (which will be announced soon).

Questions from delegates covered issues such as public perception of SUDS, the cost, frequency and arrangements made for maintenance, and the quality of sediment removed during maintenance.  This last question has not really been tackled by the partnership as little maintenance has been required to date, but SUDSnet have offered to help in designing a sediment sampling and analysis protocol for the future.  

The group is also interested in analysing our water quality sampling data sets, and comparing them with other SUDS performance data.

Our thanks for their help making the day a success go to:

Rita Dugan and Julian Fox, Bournemouth University

Sea View Coaches



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