Yorkshire Water invests £18m at Dewsbury WwTW 

An aerial image of Dewsbury wastewater treatment works
Energy and environment Network and infrastructure


Yorkshire Water is investing £18m at its Dewsbury wastewater treatment works to help improve water quality in the river Calder by removing Phosphorus from treated wastewater. 

The scheme, being carried out by BarhaleEnpureJV, will also include improvements to monitoring at the site. 

Phosphorus is a normal part of domestic sewage, entering the sewer system via domestic showers and washing machines due to products such as shampoo and liquid detergent containing Phosphorus. It can also wash off from agricultural fields after the use of fertilisers and be dissolved from soil which can be difficult to control. 

While a small amount of Phosphorus is harmless and is an essential part of many ecosystems it can become damaging to aquatic life if levels are not controlled.  

On completion, the works will ensure Phosphorus concentrations in the final effluent at Dewsbury wastewater treatment works meet water industry national environment programme (WINEP) targets for England.  

As part of the work, a number of the 14 existing Primary Settlement Tanks (PSTs) at the treatment works will be replaced with three new, larger tanks and two new primary sludge pumping stations. A new chemical dosing plant will also be added to help reduce Phosphorus levels in the final effluent returned to the environment following the treatment process. 

Richard Stuart, director of capital delivery, at Yorkshire Water, said: “We are committed to looking at innovative ways to improve the operation of our sites to meet our WINEP targets. This project will make use of a range of measures designed to reduce carbon impact and speed up the length of the works. 

“Not only does this provide significant benefits to us and our customers from a cost saving point of view, but the work will also ultimately lead to improved water quality in the Calder by removing Phosphorus from treated effluent and provide improved monitoring at the site to ensure compliance.” 

The project forms part of Yorkshire Water’s £500 million investment in Phosphorous removal – part of its ongoing commitment to ensure future facilities meet current and anticipated Environment Agency quality targets. 

Mark Wood, Barhale’s regional director for Yorkshire and North East England, said: “Effective management of Phosphorous levels can make a big difference to the quality of water in our rivers and streams. 

“This is a major upgrade for the Dewsbury Wastewater Treatment Works which reflects Yorkshire Water’s ambitions for P-removal across its assets and its commitment to meet new standards. This is just one of the many projects being undertaken to improve water quality in the Yorkshire area. 

“By using off-site manufacturing techniques for several important elements and reusing existing assets, the build programme will also benefit from reduced carbon impact and time on site.   

“At BarhaleEnpure Joint Venture, we are looking forward to continuing to work closely with the Yorkshire Water team to deliver this important project for the region.” 

Yorkshire Water completed another £18m scheme at Dewsbury wastewater treatment works in 2020 to add anaerobic digestion to the facility. The process converts waste into biogas that can be used to generate heat and electricity.