We are aware of the serious incident that has occurred at Holden Pond with waste water pollution caused during the rainfall and thunderstorms we experienced overnight on Monday and Tuesday morning. Drains overflowed and have leaked their contents into and around the pond. There were some small fish still in the pond and the pollution has killed them and left them floating on the surface. There is also toilet paper wrapped around the pond railings.
WHAT WE ARE DOING
We have reported the pollution incident to the Environment Agency, as well as direct to Southern Water. The Environment Agency and Southern Water will investigate initially and report back. We want to see a clean-up and also accountability, as well as works to minimise any future repeat of this incident, which is serious for our beloved pond on the edge of the Common, and in the Conservation Area.
Southern Water’s current response is as follows:
We’re actively investigating the cause and believe the pollution followed heavy rainfall in the area on 20 June which overwhelmed our network resulting in a spill from a nearby manhole.
We’re working closely with the Environment Agency and are doing everything we can to minimise the environmental impact on the pond and nearby stream by undertaking a thorough clean up and carrying out additional sampling.
We are very upset and angry about this incident, since Council Members on the Open Spaces & Environment Committee have given initial approval to long-term works at Holden Pond to improve the site in terms of biodiversity and wildlife. This decision needs to be ratified by all Council Members next week before we can speak to the experienced pond contractor and book in these works. We will post future updates on that when we have a final decision. This will include proposed dates and details about the extent of the improvement works.
We have not forgotten about Holden Pond and are keen to start improving the site for both residents and wildlife.