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Anglian Water and Cambridge Water are proposing a new reservoir project in the district of Fenland that will be determined by the Secretary of State for the Department for Environment Food & Rural Affairs.

The project falls into the Nationally Significant Infrastructure Project (NSIP) process defined through the Planning Act 2008 (as amended) and will be considered under Part 3 Section 27 of the legislation because the reservoir is located in England and the volume of water stored in the reservoir will exceed 30 million cubic meters (see Section 27(1)(c) of the 2008 Act). Responsibility for accepting and examining the NSIP application rests with the Secretary of State and not the local authorities, who are identified as statutory consultees, or ‘host’ authorities, in the NSIP process.

There are 4 ‘host’ local planning authorities (Cambridgeshire County Council, Fenland District Council, South Cambridgeshire District Council, and Peterborough City Council) involved in this NSIP project, in the Cambridgeshire area. The main reservoir site is located within Fenland, therefore Fenland District Council is the main site local authority, and the associated infrastructure of the reservoir will be located within Peterborough and South Cambridgeshire. Cambridgeshire County Council is identified as a host planning authority as all districts fall within the county council boundary.

The ‘host’ local planning authorities have undertaken to work together as far as possible to ensure full scrutiny of this project is undertaken.

Have your say

It is important to note that as the ‘host’ planning authorities are not the determining authorities, any correspondence in relation to this matter needs to be directed to Anglian Water and Cambridge Water in the first instance and then the Planning Inspectorate.

For further details of the NSIP process for this project, please visit the Planning Inspectorate (PINS) website.

Details of Anglian Water and Cambridge Water proposals, including any consultation events being held, are available on their website.

Consultation

The first phase of Community Consultations took place over a 10-week period between 12 October 2022 to 21 December 2022. The consultation events were held around Chatteris, Doddington and Wimblington. Feedback from the phase one consultation has been published by Anglian Water on their website (opens as pdf).

The second phase of Community Consultations will begin on 30 May 2024, and was due to last for 8-weeks. Following the General Election announcement, Anglian Water have extended the consultation period until 9 August 2024. Details of the consultation and latest proposals are available on Anglian Water's website for this project.

Anglian Water will be updating the local community and stakeholders on a new emerging design for the reservoir and outlining their proposals for the associated water infrastructure needed to fill the reservoir, treat the water, and distribute it to homes and businesses.

If you would like to receive regular updates from Anglian Water on the Fens Reservoir, you can register on their website.

More information can be found on the Planning Inspectorate’s webpage for this project.