Lake works to take place next month

chw Published Monday, 26th September 2016

Essential repair work is to be carried out on a lake at County Hall next month to ensure water levels remain consistent to provide for both the emergency services and local wildlife.

The lower lake, which sits at the front of County Hall on Spetchley Road, was created over 40 years ago to provide water for the fire service.

However, due to age, the liner that seals the lake is now starting to leak so water levels drop well below design operating levels at certain times of the year.

As well as a water source for the fire service, the lake is also an essential habitat for various breeds of wildlife, including a pair of resident breeding mute swans which will be taken to the Swan Rescue Centre for the duration of the work. It has also become a popular site for visitors.

Councillor Anthony Blagg, Cabinet Member with Responsibility for Environment, said: "The lower lake is an important part of the landscape here at County Hall. Its natural beauty makes this an attractive place to visit for residents and staff alike, as well as providing a home for many breeds of wildlife.

"It is also important to note however that the lake's original purpose was and is to provide water for the emergency services, so it is crucial that this essential maintenance and repair work is carried out to safeguard the lake for the future."

The six week project will also provide an opportunity to enhance the lake's biodiversity value, a key aim of which will be to help local pollinators by adding a wide range of marginal and aquatic plants in line with Worcestershire's designation as a 'pollinator-friendly' county.

Cllr Blagg added: "In England and Wales, an estimated 97 per cent of all unimproved lowland grassland was lost between 1930 and 1984 (UK Biodiversity Group, 1998). Recreating even a small parcel of iconic Worcestershire habitats (such as wildflower or wet grassland meadows) would offer a benefit for our local biodiversity, while also representing a cost saving to the Council; if appropriately established and managed, these habitats require far less time and resources to maintain in comparison to more traditional amenity landscaping."

Work is scheduled to begin in the coming weeks.