Nelson Buoy uncovered as sewer works end

Posted on - 12th April, 2014 - 12:08pm | Author - | Posted in - Ashton-on-Ribble, Preston News

Nelson bouy


The end of the £119m United Utilities sewer tunnel network under Preston finally nears completion.

The seemingly endless frustration of roadworks in and around Preston Docks is almost over.

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A series of storm water underground tanks and tunnels have been created to improve the bathing water quality off the Fylde coast.

Previously, dirty Preston sewer contents and rainwater spilled out into local streams and on into the River Ribble and the coast.

Beneath your feet in Preston a whole new sewer network is in place in order to reduce river pollution. Huge pipes wide enough to drive a car through, and storage tanks the size of Olympic swimming pools.


During heavy rainfall once the sewer pipes are full, stormwater which previously would have spilled into local watercourses are now be diverted to a new 3.5km long underground tunnel, holding 40 million litres of stormwater.

In normal weather stormwater is pumped back into the sewer network, to go on its journey to Preston Wastewater Treatment Works.

The works closed or narrowed road access and several sites were closed and taken over, although the United Utilities did make every effort to minimise disruption.

One of the highlights of the completion of the works – the famous, bright red Nelson Bouy located on the corner of the entrance to Preston Docks has been unveiled again (although by the looks of it a little TLC is needed). People are pleased to see the thing again after many months being hidden from sight by boards hiding the continuing works.

The former port’s ‘Nelson’ safe water landfall buoys (there are two) previously moored where the Ribble Estuary met the Irish Sea off St. Annes provide the centrepiece of large features at the Portway and Pedders Way entrances to the Preston Docks estate.

In their current locations they mark the original course of the river Ribble prior to its diversion to allow for the construction of the Docks.

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