Decorative image - Cogra Moss

Cogra Moss Reservoir


Cogra Moss is an artificial water body near Lamplugh in West Cumbria. During the summer of 2013 we discovered a buried tunnel whilst completing statutory ITIOS (In The Interest Of Safety) work.

On inspection an independent engineer suggested that the tunnel should be concreted up or have a permanent access made available to it. Further work was also identified to address the lack of a siphon facility should the reservoir levels need to be reduced in a planned event or during an emergency.

The other approach suggested by the engineer was to discontinue Cogra Moss.

The engineering report left us with two options:

  • Fix the reservoir to satisfy all the ITIOS notices, or
  • Remove the reservoir and return the area back to its natural state.

It’s worth noting we have a legal obligation under the Reservoir Act 1975 to complete one of them.

Progress to date

Our engineering department has now carried out the necessary surveys, which has also included a cost benefit analysis assessment for both available options on the future of Cogra Moss.

We have also had numerous letters and emails from the local community and beyond expressing support for retaining the reservoir rather than returning it to a natural state.

Our conclusion

As the region’s water provider we need to ensure a sensible use of our customer’s money. We also take seriously our responsibilities as guardians of some of the most beautiful countryside in the UK.

To do this we try to work closely with local communities and partner organisations and we know that our work is as much about people as it is about pipes.

After listening to the views of the community, alongside our own assessments, we have decided that the best course of action is to retain the reservoir and carry out the work required to satisfy the ITIOS inspection.

This will involve reducing the reservoir levels for a short period of time to carry out the required work, but this will only be temporary. We are working to formulate the solution that will be required to carry out the work at Cogra Moss. Once we have more confirmed details, and a timeframe for the work we will arrange an exhibition to share our plans with the community. 

This solution will ensure the integrity of the dam and the safety of those living downstream, whilst also preserving an amenity that is integral to the community.

Keep Cumbria flowing

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