Anglian Water - Fens Reservoir
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Water sources infrastructure

Transferring water to the reservoir

To fill the reservoir and provide the required amount of water to homes and businesses, we will need to draw water from more than one source.

We identified the following sources as having water available to fill the Fens Reservoir, and know that we need to use three of these sources.

The Middle Level system

This will be our primary source of water for the reservoir. When there’s water available in local waterways that could be used for public supply, it will be pumped into the reservoir from the Forty Foot Drain by a pumping station located at the reservoir site.

The Ouse Washes (River Delph)

When there’s not enough water available in the Middle Level system, we’ll either need to draw water from the Ouse Washes (river Delph) or the Great River Ouse. Using water from this sourcewould involve building equipment near Welches Dam Pumping Station to collect water from the Ouse Washes (River Delph)and pump it to the Forty Foot Drain. A section of the Forty Foot Drain would be refurbished to carry the water into the reservoir from a point north of Welches Dam Lock.

River Great Ouse

If we need to use water from the River Great Ouse instead of the Ouse Washes (River Delph), we will collect water from the River Great Ouse at Earith. Our proposals for transferring water from this source to the reservoir involve pumping it northwards to the reservoir through a new underground pipeline, that would pass east of Chatteris.

The River Nene and its Counter Drain

When we need more water than the amount we can sustainably use from the closer sources, we’ll need to use water from the River Nene supported by flows from its Counter Drain We may need to build infrastructure to collect the water from the Counter Drain (Nene), treat it and pump it into the River Nene, from where it would flow through Stanground Lock and into the Middle Level system, before being pumped into the reservoir.

Our preferred combination of sources won’t be confirmed until after we’ve carried out further assessments and engagement with statutory bodies.

Find out more

  • You can see the areas of land we’ve identified for our phase two proposals by viewing our interactive map.
  • You can find out more information about our proposals for each source by reading our associated water infrastructure proposals document.
  • You can find out more about the process we followed to identify preferred options for our associated water infrastructure by reading our Options appraisal report.

Have your say

The phase two consultation is open from 30 May until 9 August 2024.

Your local knowledge is valuable to us, and we welcome any feedback you have on our proposals for the associated water infrastructure.

All feedback you share will be reviewed, recorded, and carefully considered as we develop our proposals.

You can provide feedback on this part of the project by using the ‘proposals for water sources infrastructure’ section of our feedback form

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Get in touch

Contact the project team today.

Freephone: 0800 915 2492


Post: Freepost Fens Reservoir

Useful documents

You can view and download our project documents here


A guide to our proposals and phase two consultation brochure


Phase two consultation - associated water infrastructure proposals


Phase two consultation - main site design brochure

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