Design of Sewers for
Section 104 Agreements
Design of Sewers for Adoption
Morton-Roberts has the capability to design sewers to be adopted under a section 104 agreement for new development sites in both England and Wales. In addition we can undertake or assist in the negotiations with the water company for the preparation of the section 104 adoption agreement itself.
Similarly, we can also either undertake or assist in the negotiations with the water company for any sewer diversions (section 185) or off-site sewer requisitions (section 98). The various section numbers refer to the Water Industry Act 1991.
As regards to the design work, we use Micro Drainage System 1 and, where relevant, Simulation software for the hydraulic design of sewerage systems and AutoCAD software for the production of the construction drawings. The final drawings themselves would include 1:500 scale layout plans and long-sections of the proposed drainage infrastructure together with details of the associated ancillaries such as manholes, pumping stations, rising mains, etc.
In summary, Morton-Roberts has the capability to design the drainage for new developments in both England and Wales, please contact us for more details.
The background to the design and construction standards for new sewers is outlined in the following sections.
Background - Mandatory adoption of new sewers
Following the transfer of most existing private sewers to the water companies on 1 October 2011, DEFRA and the Welsh government planned to ensure that no further new private foul sewers were created in the future. Although the mandatory adoption of new sewers is already in operation in Wales, no progress has been made in England and there are doubts that DEFRA will ever introduce the measure.
An integral part of the mandatory adoption process would be both English and Welsh versions of national build standards for new gravity foul sewers and lateral drains. A draft version for use in England was published by DEFRA in December 2011 but no further progress has been made. The Welsh build standards will be considered in the next section.
Background - Mandatory Adoption (Wales only)
In Wales mandatory adoption applies to both proposed foul and surface water sewers which will connect to an existing public sewer. It does not apply to SUDS systems which would require approval under Schedule 3 of the Flood and Water Management Act 2010 which is now also in operation in Wales.
Guidance on the implementation of mandatory adoption was published by the Welsh Government in July 2012 while 'The Welsh Ministers standards for new gravity foul sewers and lateral drains' was published in the following October. Mandatory adoption of foul sewers and laterals was then implemented on 1 October 2012 and applies to water companies operating wholly or mainly in Wales. This means that new sewers in the parts of England served by Dwr Cymru Welsh Water (DCWW) will be adopted under the Welsh system while new sewers in the parts of Wales served by Severn-Trent Water will be adopted under the English rules.
Background - 'Sewers for Adoption', seventh edition
Mandatory adoption would have important implications for the scope and layout of sewers to be adopted. Significant changes were therefore incorporated into the seventh edition of 'Sewers for Adoption' which was published in August 2012. This edition of 'Sewers for Adoption' and the draft national build standards were compatible but in view of the uncertainty, an addendum to 'Sewers for Adoption' was promised if the final versions of the national standards differed from the draft editions.
Background - 'Sewer Sector Guidance'
The draft of the eighth edition of 'Sewers for Adoption' was a development of the seventh edition but incorporated guidance on the elements of SUDS features which could be adopted by the water companies. The final version of the new edition of 'Sewers for Adoption' was originally expected to be published in 2019 or 2020. The draft eighth edition however developed into the 'Sewer Sector Guidance' (SSG), which was published in 2019 and came into effect on 1 April 2020. The SSG is only applicable to water '...companies operating wholly or mainly in England' but forms part of a revision to the overall sewer adoption process which aims to standardise the procedure.
Background - Summary
In areas served by DCWW (mainly Wales), the gravity foul sewers and lateral drains for a new development would be designed to the Welsh national standards. Surface water sewers, pumping stations and rising mains would be designed to the seventh edition of 'Sewers for Adoption' together with the DCWW Pumping Station Addendum. The foul sewers, lateral drains and any associated ancillaries such as pumping stations would have to be offered to DCWW for adoption.
Please note that the application of mandatory adoption of sewers is based on the area served by DCWW not the border between England and Wales, see 'Background - Mandatory Adoption (Wales only)' section above.
In England the sewerage system and lateral drains for adoption would be designed to the requirements of the SSG. The developer would not have to have the sewers adopted if not required by the site's planning permission.
Photograph: A new sewer under construction within a main road in Herefordshire.