The project will clean “harmless sediment” built up over years from a network of underground pipes providing water for 190,000 Wirral households, water company United Utilities says.

Mike Addison, project manager, said: “This work is essential for water quality. Over time, pipes can fur up on the inside and deposits of iron and manganese get into the water. Although harmless, it can cause some discolouration and we are keen to tackle it.

“Giving the pipes a thorough clean will ensure Wirral households can continue to enjoy high quality drinking water for many years to come. It’s a big undertaking, which is why we will be carrying out the work in several phases.

“We are aiming to deliver the project with a minimal amount of disruption. Thankfully, full road closures should be extremely rare during the scheme’s lifetime. We will be keeping local residents, businesses and motorists fully informed, as the scheme progresses.”

The pipes, known as trunk mains, act as the motorways of the water network carrying millions of litres of water a day across the peninsula. The work will take place in phases over five years.

Techniques will include high pressure jets and industrial sponges, pushed through the pipes to remove deposits.

Plastic pipes will be inserted into the original cast iron shells of pipes in poor condition to give a secure new lining.

Preparatory work was due to begin today on Barnston Road with the installation of a new valve into a water main outside Crosshill Reservoir.

More will take place across the Wirral in coming months, including the first phase of cleaning along an Ellesmere Port pipeline in October.

David Gibbs

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