Thousands of litres of sewage is pouring into the sea near Maenporth after the failure of pumps at a waste plant, it has been claimed. 

Four tankers from ClearFlow have been contracted to ferry the excess waste for processing at Falmouth Docks following the failure of the pumps at the Pennance Mill waste station on the Maenporth Road.

The alleged pollution comes after heavy rain at the weekend left sewage flowing over the side of the at capacity tank and flowing into the adjacent Budock River.

Yesterday, Life's A Beach cafe owner Leanne Wright said she had been warned that "potential pollution" was in the sea off Maenporth Beach.


Warnings after pollution alerts for sewage spills across Falmouth beaches issued

Cornwall councillor Alan Jewell, who runs the nearby Pennance Mill holiday park, told the Packet that the tankers had been on a constant loop emptying the tank.

"The pumps have failed and the tankers are outside my door now," he told the Packet this morning. "They keep tankering it away.

"They turned the pumps off because the pipe that takes the stuff away has failed. The pipe's been in for 50 years and it's come to the end of its life and it keeps on failing. Of course once it's failed they have to turn the pumps off and it's gone three times in three days.

"The tankers cannot keep up with what's going in, with all that storm rain we had and everything."

He added: "I wouldn't fancy swimming at Maenporth Beach at the moment."

The Conservative councillor said he had been in contact with MPs Cherilyn Mackrory and George Eustice, the environment secretary, about the issue because the road is on the edge of both of their constituencies.

He said for the last ten years the situation has gradually got worse with the pipe degrading more and pipe bursts happening more frequently.

He said increasing development in the area has put increasing strain on the waste station and it couldn't cope.

A spokesperson for the Environment Agency said: "Following reports over the weekend of South West Water’s burst sewer pipe at Pennance, near Maenporth near Falmouth, the Environment Agency attended to investigate possible pollution of the local watercourse resulting from the rupture.

"Our investigations are continuing and we have raised the issue of old rising main failures with South West Water and have asked them to ensure they have a proactive approach to asset replacement and failure detection."

South West Water has also been contacted for a comment.