UKs most beautiful village as seen in passports is swamped by sewage

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    Britain's 'most beautiful village' which stars in UK passports has become swamped with sewage being pumped into its river.

    Residents of Bibury in the Cotswolds have donned their finest poo-related costumes to stage a protest aimed at Thames Water which they is to blame for dead fish floating through the Coln River.

    The murky brown water running through postcard-perfect Bibury is now too dangerous to dip a toe in let alone allow kids to wade through, claim furious locals.

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    Demonstrators said they want to draw attention to the issue and make Thames Water think twice before releasing untreated sewage into the water.

    Adding to Bibury's claims to fame from being the most depicted village in the world to featuring on the inside cover of all UK passports, is now its river for all the wrong reasons.

    Protesters gathered by River Coln in front of the famous 14th century cottages at Arlington Row in an array of striking loo-led costumes on Earth Day on April 22, 2022.

    Coln Residents Against Pollution member Katie Blackwell said: "We chose to live here because it is a quintessential village that the River Coln runs through.

    "It is an iconic Cotswold scene but they are dumping sewage upstream.

    "You can see the cloudiness in the water, you can see brown stuff that is engulfing everything instead of lovely green plants being able to grow.

    "We have witnessed dead fish floating in the river."

    Katie said that sewage if ruining the way people go about their lives as people no longer let their children play in the water or hang out on the water side.

    She said: "The water is no longer a place where we can meet friends and enjoy.

    "There used to be a time when the community would go camping down the river but that can't happen anymore.

    "We are a group of friends and family, we are sick of the sewage that is being pumped into our rivers – we are so fed up with it."

    Katie and her husband Ollie have a son who is eight months old and want him to grow up in a better world.

    Katie said: "We grew up in this area and as children we used to regularly play in the Coln River, it was part of our playground.

    "Now we won't let our children near the river as the sewage would make them ill or sick.

    "Bibury is a popular tourist destination but many are oblivious to the damage the sewage is causing.

    "It is destroying beautiful spots across the Cotswold and we want this issue to be addressed.

    "We would love to work with Thames Water to solve this issue but it is a constant battle to get in contact with someone who works there."

    A spokesperson for Thames Water said: “We don’t have a storm overflow point at Bibury, however taking action on river health is a key focus for us and we want to make discharges of untreated sewage unnecessary as quickly as possible.

    “We have an upgrade planned for Fairford sewage treatment works which is on the River Coln.

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    "This project will provide a major increase in treatment capacity, from 37.8 to 56.8 litres per second, reducing the need for untreated discharges in wet weather.

    “We expect the project to be completed in 2025.

    "We're also investigating the impact of groundwater on the sewer network in this area. This will help inform our long-term planning.”

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