Major exercise to be held at Draycote Water

14 March 2017

Severn Trent’s Draycote Water is hosting a major exercise by the emergency services on March 20, meaning visitors may get more than they bargained for.

Organised by the Warwickshire Local Resilience Forum, the exercise will see emergency services respond to a potential incident that affects the reservoir.

The incident response will run during the afternoon only, although there may be some set up time earlier in the day, and parking will be limited as a result.

As part of the role play, the fire and rescue service will be using their high volume pump to move water out of and back into the reservoir, and Severn Trent will be testing its own plans on what to do in case of an emergency.

Kate Donovan, from Severn Trent, said: “We wouldn’t want people turning up for a run, a bike ride or a spot of bird watching and wonder what was going on given how visible it’s going to be.“It won’t affect all of Draycote, so people can still come along, but the complete circuit of the reservoir won’t be open while the exercise is ongoing, and I think it’s fair to say it’s not going to be as quiet and peaceful as usual.”

Activities on site (on a normal day) include bird watching, cycling, fishing, walking, sailing and wind surfing, together with a café selling quality coffee and cakes, amongst other things.

Draycote is completely manmade, with construction starting in 1967 and completing in 1969. It was opened in 1970 and completely filled for the first time in 1972. Today, it can hold up to five billion gallons of water, much of which is pumped from the River Leam.