Porthmellon Centre Water Harvesting Measures Must Stay

The proposed development of the site

The proposed development of the site

Councillors have rejected plans to remove water-harvesting measures from the new Porthmellon Innovation Centre, currently under construction.

At yesterday’s Planning Meeting, Senior Manager Craig Dryden said it wasn’t possible to bury the tanks needed for the scheme underground, because of the high water table at the site.

He said the water would only have been used for flushing toilets, and other measures, such as dual-flush toilets, would help save drinking water.

But Council Chairman Amanda Martin didn’t agree. She said she couldn’t support the request because the authority needed to “lead by example.”

She felt sure there was room somewhere to fit water butts to store the rainfall above ground.

Chairman of Planning Gaz O’Neill asked Craig why there was a request for the condition to be removed, when it didn’t actually stipulate that underground tanks were needed and other options could be considered.

Cllr Robert Dorrien Smith felt that any rainfall in Scilly would eventually end up in the water supply for reuse, and so could be described as harvested water. “It’s not as though our water is being pumped from the North of Scotland,” he said.

Managers of the project, which is already delayed by five months, will now have to come up with another solution.

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