Blackburn, UK to Witness Construction of New Wastewater Treatment Facility


United Utilities, UK-based Water Company, would be spending about £120m in order to improve wastewater management in Blackburn, Lancashire. Contractors have been invited for submission of tender with respect to the works of this project. The entire project incorporates designing, constructing as well as commissioning a new treatment facility within Blackburn. In addition to this, United Utilities also intends to go ahead with the updation of its facility in Darwen for the improvement of capacity. At present, the company is looking for a contractor to move forward with the planned enhancement at Blackburn Wastewater Treatment Works.

The work scope takes into consideration the building of supplementary storm storage capacity, transferring facility for brewery and sewers waste, facilities for screening and liquor treatment along with the setting up of new power engines.

A spokesman of United Utilities conveyed to the Lancashire Telegraph that currently the company seeks a contractor for Blackburn Wastewater Treatment Works. The successful one will be given the opportunity to design a work program for the upgrading of this facility, to ensure that it is capable of continuing to live up to the demands of today’s population. At the same time, the facility should reduce the volume and frequency of stormwater discharges within local watercourses, which is indeed very good news taking into account the environmental issues.

According to the spokesperson, United Utilities is at present just at the initial step of the journey for the improvement of Blackburn Wastewater Treatment Works. It is not likely that any activity would start onsite, prior to the summer of 2016.


The contract for this plant construction work is named as the Darwen and Blackburn WwTw AMP 6 Integrated Solution. It is intended to achieve lower levels of Bacterial Oxygen Demand, Final Effluent and Ammonia limits. At the same time it should comply with the requisites of the Shellfish Waters and Bathing Waters Directives pertaining to storm water spills.

The project brings in a number of operational risks, inclusive of:

  • The structural situation of the aqueduct structure
  • Screened sludge tanks, which are in fact the former consolidation tanks, are uncovered
  • The digesters are inefficient with respect to the retention time
  • A segment of the catchment delivers flows that are unscreened
  • The current BAFF (Biological and Fine Filtration) plant has the capability to handle only half of the present FTFT (Flow to Full Treatment)
  • Regular flooding takes place in the Darwen inlet pumping station
  • The strain press is being bypassed by the thickened sludge
  • Consistent performance is not performed by the EEH (Enhanced Enzymic Hydrolyser)

Blackburn WwTW has many projects delivered across the past two AMP investment periods. However, according to United Utilities, although the projects had resulted in improvements in water quality, additional enhancements are required for AMP6. This has triggered a complete review of the WwTW for identification of a long standing solution that would cater to the regulatory as well as the maintenance requirements at the site.

The new works include the closure of the present Darwen WwTW with a new transfer sewer for diversion of Darwen flows along with building of additional storm storage capacity.

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