YORKSHIRE Water has begun work to increase the capacity of its wastewater treatment works in Ilkley in the next stage of its investment in the area.

The next phase of works will see contractor Ward and Burke install a large storm water tank that will work as additional storage to reduce the number and volume of discharges from the storm overflow to the river Wharfe following periods of prolonged or heavy rainfall. The stored storm water will then be released to Ilkley wastewater treatment works once the rainfall event has passed and incoming flows have reduced.

Construction of the storm tanks is expected to complete in spring 2025.

During this time, the utility will keep its existing compound on Ashlands playing field for storage and welfare facilities. A new access road to the treatment works will also be installed off Dansk Way, and double yellow lines will be extended at the junction with Dansk Way and Leeds Road.

Andrew McKinley, project manager at Yorkshire Water, said: “We’re pleased to be commencing the next part of our investment in Ilkley. Increasing capacity at the treatment works will have a significant impact on the water quality at the designated bathing water site in the town, as will the following stages of the project.”

The wider project will also feature:

  • Increased storage at additional storm overflows within 5km upstream of the bathing water
  • Significant upgrades at the treatment works, including a new aerated rush bed within the grounds of Ilkley treatment works to more than double its wastewater treatment capacity
  • The project, when complete, will reduce storm overflow discharges to support the river Wharfe’s bathing water status

Andrew added: “Once upgrades to the network are completed, the treatment works will meet Government targets of one discharge per bathing water season nine years ahead of the 2035 deadline.”

The work continues to build on the £15m increased sewer capacity delivered this year to reduce discharges from Rivadale View storm overflow.