Curious visitors will be able to experience the sights, sounds and smells of Didcot sewage works at an open day. The event on Saturday, August 31 will offer guests a rare glimpse into how we transforms the town’s sewage into clean river water. It includes a tour of the site in Basil Hill Road, which treats waste water from around 37,000 people in and around Didcot, and a look at the equipment used to process the sewage. During the visit guests will see how solid matter is filtered out of waste water and the problems that can be caused by “unflushable” items such as wet wipes, which can clog up machinery at the site and block the pipes that feed into it. They will also be able to witness the other stages of the sewage treatment process and see the end product, where the fully cleaned up water is released back in to the environment. Thames Water’s education executive Deena McKinney, who will be leading the tour, said: “We always find our open days are really popular because people are fascinated by what we do with all the waste water that leaves their homes. “They’re also amazed at just how big an impact the things they pour and flush away have on our equipment and the environment. “Young people in particular love the ‘yuck’ factor associated with a sewage works. We hope lots of people will come and join us.” The open day will run from 10am to noon. Places are limited and while children are welcome, they must be aged seven or older and accompanied by an adult. To book, email firstname.lastname@example.org
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The Education team think we have the best jobs in the world. Why is that, I hear you cry? Well, not only do we work for Thames Water but we get to talk to young people from schools and community groups across our catchment about the brilliant business of Water and Waste.
One of the biggest ways we do this is by welcoming them to one of the 5 Education Centres in our patch. Didcot, Slough, Hogsmill, Long Reach and Maple Lodge sewage treatment works welcome hundreds of school age children each year, where they can experience the sights, sounds and smells of a working site.
The hesitant looks and wrinkled noses when they first arrive are replaced as the day goes on with excitement and delight at what they discover. Our visitors are introduced to what we do as a business, focusing on the Water Cycle and its importance. We then discuss and do an experiment on Poo Power (always a show stopper!).
The highlight of the visit is the site tour, a chance to see and understand each part of the sewage treatment process. Why are wet wipes such a problem for Thames Water? What is a Fatberg? How do we recycle your poo to make energy? Why is Water precious? All these questions and more are answered for our guests.
The remainder of a typical visit (aside from lunch of course..) might be focused on the topics of separation and filtration of sewage or the importance of using water wisely with some interactive quiz questions.
As they head home, the students are left to think about what they can do to be more water efficient and to live by the 3 P’s when it comes to what can and can’t go down the toilet! And best of all, they can encourage all their friends and family to do the same #pesterpower.
As well as great and unique day out for kids, our key focus is to ensure we support teachers with their teaching of the curriculum in Science and Geography in a hands-on, fun and informative environment.
If you would like to find out more, please get in touch with any of us in the team or leave us a comment here!
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