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Tideway project firmly on track as Annual Report published

  • Construction across the project now in full swing with three tunnel boring machines on site
  • 20,000 HGV loads avoided on roads by transporting materials by river
  • Tideway now largest issuer of green bonds in sterling worldwide

Tideway, the company delivering the Thames Tideway Tunnel – London’s ‘super sewer’ – has today published its third annual report and accounts.

When complete, the 25km Tunnel will tackle the problem of sewage pollution in the River Thames, preventing the millions of tonnes of sewage that flow directly into the Thames every year.

The report sets out significant progress over the last 12 months with all but one of 21 construction sites now fully up and running.

The first tunnel boring machine launch shaft was completed, 60m deep and with a circumference the size of St Paul’s dome, at Tideway’s Kirtling Street site in Battersea.

Three of the six giant tunnel boring machines (TBMs) needed to dig the tunnel were delivered to sites during the year and since year end two – Ursula and Millicent – have been lowered underground to prepare for tunnelling.

The report highlights Tideway’s commitment to using the river – to cut the number of lorries needed for the project – with nearly 420,000 tonnes of material moved by barge to date. During 2017/18 more than 20,000 lorry loads were avoided as a result.

The project reported zero major injuries for the third consecutive year and continued with its award-winning ‘EPIC’ health and safety induction programme.

Tideway successfully piloted several innovations including an ‘electric hydrofraise’ – a special digging machine - at its Chambers Wharf site in Bermondsey, which reduces emissions and noise, and began the roll-out of a new fleet of high visibility low entry cab vehicles to improve road safety.

The company largely completed its financing programme with the project fully funded to the end of construction. More than £1bn of finance was raised during the year, including £450m of green bonds making Tideway the largest corporate sterling issuer of green bonds.

The company’s efforts to promote gender equality were recognised with Tideway gaining a place in the coveted Times ‘Top 50’ employers for women index.

Andy Mitchell, CEO said: “We have made good strides forward during the year, moving up a gear in our construction activity. The arrival of three of our tunnel boring machines, all by river, was significant and puts the project on a firm course. Our financing programme has been successful, with us now fully financed to the end of construction. We are in no doubt there is still a huge amount to do but we are well set up for the challenges ahead.”