A water pipe that has been working round the clock for approximately 70 years to deliver drinking water to villagers in Pluckley is about to be upgraded.

The £700,000 project begins on Monday (8 November) when South East Water, will replace 1.2 kilometres of drinking water mains in Smarden Road.

Jeremy Dufour, Project Manager for South East Water said: “As the local provider of drinking water direct to taps for more than 100 years, it is unacceptable to us the local community in Pluckley has experienced disruption caused by a number of bursts on this pipe.

“As a result this work is now essential to continue to protect the top-quality drinking water supplies in the area.”

Work is expected to take eight months to complete and as a safety precaution, Smarden Road will be closed in phases to through traffic while the work is taking place with a diversion in operation. Access to homes and businesses will be maintained at all times.

Jeremy continued: “We know this road is popular for passing traffic and there are lots of homes and businesses in the area which may be disrupted while the work is underway.

“Road closures are a last resort but are vital to ensure the safety of our team and the public while we install the new pipe.

“While we know eight months is a long time for the road to be closed, our team will work as quickly and safely as possible and as long as we encounter no major issues or extreme weather, we hope to complete the project sooner.”

South East Water held an open public meeting on 13 October to hear the thoughts of the community before work began.

Speaking about the meeting, Jeremy said: “I’d like to thank all those who came to our public meeting which was vital to understand how local residents and businesses could be affected by our works.

“I’d also like to thank the local community in advance for their patience and understanding while we carry out this work.”

More information on the project can be found on a dedicated webpage corporate.southeastwater.co.uk/Pluckley

This work forms part of South East Water’s £433 million investment programme between 2020 and 2025.

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