4th Aug, 2020

Pollution spill contaminating Batchley Brook at Forge Mill Museum

Ross Crawford 11th Jul, 2020 Updated: 11th Jul, 2020

POLLUTION has poured into the Batchley Brook in Redditch.

The thick black slick can clearly be seen as the water flows towards the River Arrow by Forge Mill Needle Museum.

The beauty spot is popular with walkers, runners and residents exercising their pets along its banks and the brook also feeds a water trough for cattle grazing in the fields.

But dogs that have taken a dip in the brook today, Saturday, July 11, have emerged covered in an oil slick.

A pungent smell of diesel oil also hangs over the area.

Regulars walkers said the brook had been clear at 7pm last night and that the spill must have taken place overnight or this morning.

The brook runs at the back of several factories in Redditch before emerging at Forge Mill.

From there it joins the River Arrow which runs through Arrow Valley Park before continuing to Studley and Alcester before flowing into the River Avon further down stream.

Local resident Chris Hodgetts said: “We have rescue dogs and they have gone into the water and come out covered in the stuff.”

He added that the pollution had been there all morning.

“I’ve been ringing around trying to report it without making any progress,” he added.

The pollution spill comes just days after Redditch Borough Councillor Anthony Lovell, portfolio holder for Climate Change, said the key to improving the environment of the town began with improving water quality.

The slick is clearly visible from the footbridges over it the brook and the smell is all-pervading.

An Environment Agency spokesperson said: “We are aware of a pollution incident on the Batchley Brook in Redditch following reports from two members of the public.

“The amount of pollutant involved is unlikely to cause any harm to the environment, but we are in contact with local partner agencies and will continue to monitor the situation closely.

“Members of the public can use our 24 hour incident hotline 0800 80 70 60 if they have concerns and need to report an environmental incident to us.”

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