District News, September 3 2021

The Tarbert sewer upgrade project, which began in August 2020, has now been completed.

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Sewer flooding risk eased with Tarbert upgrade

Scottish Water’s £3.4 million project to help reduce the risk of sewer flooding in Tarbert has been completed.

The scheme, which began in August 2020, has increased the capacity of the sewer network to help tackle historic flooding issues.

The work involved the installation of 350 metres of bigger sewer pipe that was in place beforehand as well as large diameter sewers along Barmore Road, Harbour Street, and a short section of School Road.

Two existing Thomas Telford dry stone culvert crossings had to be negotiated during the works.

Beams were constructed over these culverts to support traffic while protecting their structural integrity.

Seven-metre-deep piles were installed to help support these beams.

These major upgrades will also help to prevent items which should not be flushed down the toilet, such as wet wipes, from ending up in the sea during severe storm events.

Georgina Reid, Scottish Water’s corporate affairs manager for the west, said: ‘There were a few issues which had historically contributed to the flooding in this area.

‘Tidal surges, surface water running down the steep hill, and insufficient existing hydraulic capacity on the sewer network meant that action had to be taken.

‘Any sewer flooding causes a great deal of distress for communities, and so it really is great that the increased capacity of the sewer network here will now help reduce that risk.

‘We would like to thank the whole community for their patience, understanding and support, working with us to allow the successful delivery of this project on time. They took it all in their stride.

‘The engagement with schools, community council and local councillors has been an extremely positive example of ensuring our customers are at the heart of what we do.’

Thanking everyone involved, Councillor Anne Horn said: ‘The work in Tarbert was carried out professionally, efficiently and, when required, compassionately.

‘We are grateful to all the teams who carried out this major work.

‘They kept us updated and made every effort to keep disruption to a minimum where possible. Thanks again to everyone involved.’



Ringing in the changes for phone box

A community consultation has begun in a bid to find a new life for an old phone box at Loch Gorm on Islay.

A questionnaire has been distributed locally and online to gauge opinion from the people who live and work in the Gruinart area.

The phone box adoption survey asks respondents to explain what the iconic installation means to them and invites the community to share stories about it.

In addition, it asks if they are in favour of adopting the phone box from BT, which has made clear it will no longer maintain it.

Overlooking Loch Gorm at the Samaigmore end, the phone box has not been used for its original purpose for many years and is described as being in a poor state of repair.

Suggestions made so far regarding the phone box’s future include to house a defibrillator, to be a local information point or to function as community library.

Additional ideas are also invited by the committee which comprises chairperson Peter Leckie, secretary Petra Pearce and treasurer Sharon McHarrie.

Suggestions invited for the phone box’s new life.