Brixham farmer: Smells tracked to sewer vents not my recycled shellfish
A SOUTH Devon farmer says he not to blame for creating fishy smells which have prompted complaints from residents in Brixham.
The source of the odours has been tracked down to vents from a sewer crossing farmland, Mr Haddock claims.
It had been suspected the fishy smells were from the processed shellfish which Churston farmer Richard Haddock is using in a pilot project to inject the waste as a soil improver.
His company's project to recycle the unwanted shellfish waste has won a £75,000 Government grant to go on to the next phase.
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Mr Haddock said: "The odours complained about are nothing to do with us.
"Embarrassingly, the new fish quay is so efficient at cleaning and washing down that their water goes into a holding tank on the quay and then gets pumped up to Brokenbury Quarry sewage treatment works.
"The three vent pipes for the sewer are on my farm. We all forgot this and didn't realise it.
"We are getting a problem at 8pm or 9pm and I am getting the blame for it.
"This past year we have had more north and north easterly/westerly winds than we have had before so the smells are not from the shellfish project we have been doing.
"We have contacted South West Water the Environment Agency and I hope they would fix it.
"I had planning permission for my soil recovery business refused over complaints about serious odours and noise.
"Now SWW accept that the vents are there, what are they going to do about it? All other sewer vents are eight metres high, It dissipates the smell better. These are two metres high. "
A spokesman for South West Water said: "We have checked the rising main in the vicinity of North Boundary Road and Copythorne Road, which takes waste water from Oxen Cove pumping station to Brokenbury Sewage Treatment Works.
"Air vents on the sewer could be the source of the smell, although no smell was present when we visited.
"We will review the frequency of our checks and the cleaning regime at Oxen Cove pumping station but, unfortunately, we cannot regulate the strength or nature of the waste water that enters the pumping station, the majority of which comes from Brixham fish quay.
"We would urge any customers to contact us directly to report such issues, on our 24-hour freephone services helpline on 0800 169 1144. This will enable us to track and respond to any further reports."