Why we are carrying out this work?
We're constantly working to improve the supply and quality of your water so you continue to receive clean, fresh water for your morning shower and to enjoy a great cuppa.
Some of the pipes which supply water to almost 43,000 properties in the Carlisle area are over 90 years old. Over time natural mineral deposits have built up inside, although these deposits are not harmful, they can sometimes cause the water to become discoloured.
In February 2016 we started a £14 million investment programme to clean and refurbish over 32km of water pipes to improve the quality of water for customers in the Carlisle area. Our work will take around four years to complete and will be split across ten projects. The overview map indicates where we'll be working (PDF 477 KB opens in a new window).
We'll be using a variety of methods which will include:
- Inserting new durable pipe into the existing cast iron water main
- Constructing completely new sections of pipe to replace the existing water main
Once our team have replaced the larger pipes, we'll then start to clean the smaller pipe network. This work often takes place at night when there is less demand for water and involves using high pressure water jetting to flush the pipes and remove any mineral deposits.
This element of work is due to start in mid-April 2021. Before we start the work in your area we'll send a card to let you know when this work will begin. You can find further information about our pipe cleaning here.
How our work may affect you
We're carrying out this important investment to improve the water network in Carlisle, ensuring customers can receive a reliable and high quality water supply for many years to come.
Temporary changes to the appearance of your water supply
During our work there is a possibility that you may experience a slight discolouration to your water supply. We'll do all we can to prevent this from happening, but we need to take each section of pipe out of operation as our work progresses.
To ensure we keep taps flowing to homes and businesses, the water will be rerouted and flow direction changed within the pipe network. This can disturb the sediment, and result in some temporary short term discolouration which we understand can look unpleasant and tends to be more noticeable when filling a glass or running a bath.
Discoloured water is unlikely to be harmful and can often be cleared by allowing the first incoming cold water tap (usually in the kitchen) to run at a trickle until it clears. This can clear quickly, but could take longer as it is dependent on how much of the mineral deposit has been disturbed.
Alternatively the water may appear 'cloudy' or 'milky' which is often a result of trapped air while we've been working, this generally disappears as the air escapes from the pipes. If a glass is filled and left to stand for a few minutes, you should notice that tiny air bubbles will rise to the surface and the cloudy appearance will disappear.
We'll be carrying out our work in phases which may require temporary traffic management, lane closures and on occasions we may need to temporarily close roads.
There's further information about our current traffic management.
Don't worry, if you live or work in the area, we'll write to customers in advance of the work starting to provide further information about how our work may affect you and provide updates. We'll also hold local community drop-in sessions as our programme of work progresses.
Thank you for bearing with us while we carry out our work. If you have any queries please call us on 0345 672 3723 quoting project number AMEY U.80018815. We'll be happy to help.
Keeping you updated about our current and next stages of work
Our current phase of work
We're currently working on the final project (project 6) in our programme of work to replace some of the main water pipes in Carlisle
We've made some temporary changes to the direction of water flow in some areas of the network, so we can keep taps flowing while the work is carried out.
The work involves replacing sections of the water pipe from Victoria Place, through Strand Road, Dukes Road, Hardwicke Circus, West Tower Street, Annetwell Street and finishing at Bridge Street. The project overview map shows the pipe route . Work began in January 2021 and will involve traffic management as the work progresses - further information can be found on the traffic information page.
Work will then continue to focus on cleaning the smaller pipe network. Further information is available on our pipe cleaning programme here.