Close Search

Unveiling a new world of high-tech water treatment

18th September 2017

Visitors from around the world have been shown a glimpse into the future at South West Water’s Mayflower Water Treatment Works.

South West Water is building the new £60million state-of-the-art treatment works to serve Plymouth and the surrounding area.

Work started on site in April 2016 and Mayflower is on schedule to become operational in autumn 2018.

The project, the first of its kind in the UK, is attracting widespread interest from other UK water companies and around the world, as it will use innovative water treatment processes to deliver even cleaner water more efficiently, helping to keep customer bills down.

The cutting-edge treatment processes were designed and developed by Dutch water technology company PWNT, wholly owned by Dutch water utility PWN, and tested at a prototype facility in Plymouth from June 2013 until June 2015.

The new technology features SIX® suspended ion exchange with resin regeneration system, ILCA® inline coagulation and CeraMac® C90 ceramic membrane microfiltration. It is the first time that this combined technology will be used in the UK.

The ten C90 vessels, which will house a total of 900 ceramic membranes and be capable of treating up to 90 megalitres of water a day, are now in place.

The Chair of Water UK, Sir Brian Bender; members of the Chartered Institution of Water and Environmental Management; PWNT’s CEO, Jonathan Clement; and representatives from other UK and overseas water companies were among the first visitors to the site to see the recently installed SIX®, ILCA® and CeraMac® processes in situ. 

South West Water’s Managing Director Stephen Bird said: “After years of research, detailed planning and nearly 18 months of hard work on site it is exciting to see our flagship water treatment works taking shape.

“The three key themes we have been impressing on all our visitors are innovation – the use of new technology and a fresh approach to water treatment; collaboration – working in partnership and furthering our collective knowledge; and sustainability – this is a long-term investment, we’ll be producing renewable energy on site and using fewer chemicals and producing less waste than a conventional treatment works.

“It’s amazing to see this project developing from pioneering research to full-scale delivery in such a short period of time.”

Jonathan Clement of PWNT said: “It has been outstanding to collaborate with South West Water, a like-minded innovative utility. It’s probably one of the top five to 10 utilities in the world to take this kind of initiative to think forwardly and use new robust technology.”

Notes to editors

  • Mayflower Water Treatment Works will meet the needs of Plymouth’s growing population and provide a secure, high-quality drinking water supply for the wider Plymouth area for generations to come. It will replace the treatment works at Crownhill in Plymouth, which was built in the 1950s and is reaching the end of its useful life
  • Global design and consultancy firm Arcadis is the main design contractor, in partnership with consulting engineers Pell Frischmann. Together they are responsible for all the design work outside of the key treatment process
  • Infrastructure group Balfour Beatty is the main construction contractor, in partnership with Interserve, responsible for the construction of all infrastructure, buildings and pipelines for the new water treatment works
  • The project is South West Water’s biggest single capital investment in its highly-rated 2015-20 business plan

More information is available on the South West Water website www.southwestwater.co.uk/mayflower or PWNT website: www.pwnt.com


For further information please contact:

Press Office
South West Water
Published: 18 September 2017