Last week the workmen excavating the area around the sluice in this part of the harbour discovered a void has formed behind this sluice – something that leaks very badly in both directions – running into this is a sewer.
This means that as the rise and fall of the tide in the inner basin fills and empties this void the sewage is flushed into the harbour, as the basements in Harbour Parade flood regularly, it would also seem reasonable to assume that the floodwater there contains a proportion of sewage to a greater or lesser degree.
I should point out here that the people doing this work are competent as is the contractor for the Pleasurama development and it is my understanding that the dangerous problems here have been reported to the proper authorities.
Incidentally the sewers here and any sewage should be and theoretically have been since Victorian times, at a much greater depth, certainly deeper than the cellars in harbour parade.
The only thing that would be at this depth is surface drainage from the road and possibly peoples roofs, so this a serious problem that either relates to the early to mid 1900s sewage system still being connected, which it shouldn’t be, or that the surface drainage has been illegally tapped into.
This whole area is too dangerous for the work on the outflow to the inner basin to continue and I understand that this has now been rerouted to a different existing opening on the eastern side of the inner basin.
There is of course the more fundamental problem here, that is that the whole infrastructure in Harbour Parade would seem unlikely to be able to cope with the new Royal Sands Development, a problem that is likely to be an expensive and disruptive one.
Some of the pictures to substantiate this are really rather unpleasant, so I haven’t published them, those I have published are at http://www.michaelsbookshop.com/610/id31.htm I am not sure if this is where the scum on the water comes from but it would seem probable.