Water

We will investigate ways in which we can more accurately measure our water consumption with the aim of understanding our areas of significant usage and, in the future, setting longer term targets for water use reductions.

Water data has been collected for sites completed in the 2014/15. The process has highlighting the need for better measurement processes across divisions which will be investigated in 2015/16.

We will introduce metered supplies for construction water usage at 90% of new developments, building up an accurate picture of Bellway’s water usage.

 

We are mindful of the impact our developments can have on the wider environment, with drainage and flood mitigation a key priority throughout the planning and construction process. We also seek to investigate ways in which we can support customers to reduce water usage in their new homes. 

Flood Mitigation

When a new site is identified, we assess the potential environmental impacts of the development, including the consequences for the water cycle. The risk of flooding is considered at all stages of a project, from initial design through to construction. Flood risk assessments and surveys are carried out and drainage experts are involved in site master planning. Each construction phase is planned with a view to protecting sites and their neighbours before other works begin.

Where we create new hard-standing areas, such as roads and foundations, in areas which were naturally porous, we take measures to reduce the level of run-off water. We support the use of porous paving and creating water drainage systems such as Sustainable Drainage Systems (SuDS). SuDS are drainage solutions that provide an alternative to the direct channelling of surface water through networks of pipes and sewers to nearby watercourses. By mimicking natural drainage systems, SuDS aim to reduce surface water flooding (by increasing water storage capacity), improve water quality and reduce the transfer of pollution to the water environment. In 2015/16, we installed 129 SuDS into our developments.

Number of homes with rainwater harvesting

Domestic Water Use

To aid our customers in their water use reduction, all Bellway new homes incorporate reduced water use measures. Some of these measures include dual flush lavatories which use one third less water, low overflow devices on baths, kitchen tap flow reduction devices and aerating water in showers. In some cases we incorporate water efficient considerations into the design, such as the use of grey water recycling (water diverted from sinks into the lavatory cisterns) to flush lavatories.

Bellway also supplied 1,183 homes with rainwater recycling butts in 2015/16 in order to reduce customers’ needs to use hosepipes in the summer months.

As part of the requirement of building regulations, with these technologies in place we have reduced the average water consumption in our homes from 150 litres to a maximum of 125 litres per person, per day. This provides financial savings for our customers as well as ongoing wider environmental benefits. Through the roll-out of our Standard House Types in the coming year, we aim to reduce that further, down to 110 litres per person per day.

 

Case Study

Sustainable Drainage

The development at St Clements lakes in Dartford is notable for the number of man-made lakes throughout the scheme. These lakes not only serve as a wonderful scenery and amenity space for residents, but also forms part of the SuDS drainage system in which surface water from the surrounding highways and dwellings feed directly into the network of five interlinked waterbodies. The SuDS also provides a large habitat for local wildlife growth.

Also in Dartford, surface water at our Joyce Green Lane development will not be running into the existing local drainage systems. Instead surface water will run off into the local marsh land adjacent to the site which is also a habitat for a significant amount of local wildlife. A system of two attenuation tanks, including a petrol interceptor to avoid water contamination, will slowly release the water to the local marsh land. All these works will be observed and monitored by an ecologist to ensure minimal damage to the surrounding areas and to ensure that wildlife will not be unduly disturbed by the works.

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