Teddington Direct River Abstraction - A vital drought resilience project for London

We’re proposing a new river abstraction on the River Thames close to Teddington Weir, supported by water recycling, to draw water from the river in times of drought.

Reducing leaks

Under our proposals, we’d transfer water abstracted from the river via an existing underground tunnel to the Lee Valley reservoirs. We’d then pump highly treated recycled water from Mogden sewage treatment works to compensate for the additional water taken from the river to protect the environment and wildlife.

As a drought resilience project, this will provide up to 75 million litres per day. It will only be used during periods of prolonged dry weather.

Map of the new river abstraction at Teddington View full image

We’re holding a public consultation and we’d welcome your feedback. We’ve been going through an initial process to evaluate potential sites for the new structures, pipelines and shafts that we think would be needed for the project, weighing up their relative advantages and disadvantages. You can find out more about the site options and our evaluation of them in our supporting documents

We’ve published a project update, which you can find here: View TDRA summary brochure.

You can find further information about the proposals we’re consulting on here: View site options consultation document.

We'd welcome your feedback on the site options and you can respond to the public consultation in the following ways:

The public consultation will run from 17 October 2023 to 11.59pm on 11 December 2023 and we encourage everyone to respond.

We’re also holding several community information events in November at which you’ll be able to find out more about our proposals and talk to our team. Further details about these events, including how to register, can be found here.

We’ll continue to engage with local communities and stakeholders as we develop our proposals and there will be another public consultation before we apply for planning consent for our final proposals.

provide up to 75 million litres per day

Why do we need this project?

We need additional water resources from the early 2030s so that we can be confident we can provide a secure water supply to our customers during severe drought events. Working with WRSE, we’ve carried out further modelling and testing of our future water resources plans and have concluded that this project is the best value project to increase our drought resilience in London by the early 2030s.

Our proposals for the Teddington Direct River Abstraction project have been overseen by RAPID, a consortium of water industry regulators. RAPID have implemented a ‘gated’ regulatory process to make sure that all new strategic water supply options are considered in a fair and consistent way, with transparency, and that our customers’ money is spent wisely.

More information about RAPID and the gated process can be found here. You can find the technical reports, additional information provided to RAPID, and feedback relating the project here.

So far we’ve completed initial assessments, including environmental and water quality monitoring, the results of which show that the project presents a low risk to the environment, which can be mitigated. We’re continuing to carry out more detailed assessments, working with the Environment Agency, Natural England, the Drinking Water Inspectorate and other stakeholders.

Site appraisals are underway to find the best route for the proposed new pipeline.

We’ll need to carry out an Environmental Impact Assessment to identify and assess the potential positive and negative impacts the project might have on the environment.

We're listening to concerns raised by local communities about the perceived public health and environmental impacts of the project.

This is our first project specific consultation, and as it is developed further, there will be more opportunities for you to share your views before we apply for consent to build.