Southern Water fined £500,000 for polluting Kent watercourse

Polluted water in Swalecliffe Brook Image copyright Environment Agency
Image caption Nearly 250 fish, including endangered eels, were found dead in the polluted watercourse

Southern Water has been fined £500,000 for polluting water in Whitstable and Herne Bay with untreated sewage that killed local wildlife.

A 1.2km (0.6 mile) stretch of the Swalecliffe Brook and waters around the nearby seaside towns were affected.

Canterbury Crown Court was told the firm did not respond swiftly enough to the pollution in July 2013, caused by problems at a pumping station.

Nearly 250 fish, including endangered eels, were found dead.

The watercourse flows through the Thanet coast Site of Special Scientific Interest before joining the north Kent coast to the east of Whitstable.

Southern Water agreed to pay costs of £19,224, as well as the fine.

At the time, it apologised for the "unacceptable" incident.

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