Severn Trent reveals the Top Ten weird and wacky things that have been incorrectly put into the sewers 

3rd May 2024

Ever wondered how you’d fit a garden shed into the sewer, why a Ken doll was found swimming around in there or what other weird and wonderful items have been found by Severn Trent?

To provide all the answers, the water company has created a Top Ten of the strangest and funny things that have made their way into the sewers it looks after, which includes:

  1. Toys - including a Dora the Explorer action figure which obviously went on quite an explorative adventure and a Ken doll
  2. Pieces of a garden shed
  3. False teeth
  4. Underwear
  5. A chopped-up bed frame
  6. Glasses
  7. Wallets
  8. Keys
  9. Cutlery
  10. Car tyres

But the funny list does come with an important message and that is to ask people to think about what is being putting into the sewers.

Grant Mitchell, sewer blockages lead for Severn Trent, said: “Over the years we have seen so many things making their way through the sewers, all you have to do is sift through the skips of unflushable items that are filtered out of the treatment process at our Sewage Treatment Works and you will be able to find all sorts.

“How some of this stuff has got in there is anyone’s guess, but it makes the job pretty entertaining for everyone. But it does come with a very important message for everyone to be careful what you are putting in the sewers as it can cause messy and costly problems for all our customers.

“Although we see items like this at times, the thing we see the most that cause blockages are wet wipes and other ‘unflushable’ items such as nappies and sanitary products. We would urge everyone to keep in mind that only the three P’s should be put down the toilet – pee, poo and paper and bin everything else.”

In the past year, waste crews at the water company have managed and cleared an astonishing 28,782 blockages. One of the biggest offenders of blockages is wet wipes. Even some that say ‘flushable’ or ‘biodegradable’ on the packaging don’t break down like toilet paper. Other problem items include kitchen roll, cotton buds, nappies and sanitary products.

Last week, the Government announced it will be introducing new world-leading legislation to ban wet wipes containing plastic. The new law will make it illegal to sell wet wipes containing plastic in England and Severn Trent has backed the plans.

Wet wipes and other unflushable items cause massive issues when flushed, including blockages that back up and cause sewage to flood into homes – something which is not nice for householders and costly to fix so everyone is being asked to be a binner, not a blocker. 

To get people thinking about what should and shouldn't be put down the toilet and sink, Severn Trent is launching ‘Sewer Stories’, showcasing the work that waste teams do to keep sewers clear and some of the weird things they find down in the sewers, which has included everything from false teeth to car tyres. 

For further information and advice about blockages visit and keep an eye out on Severn Trent social media for the Sewer Stories. 

Anyone who has a problem, either with slow drains or a blocked sewer it can be reported here or by calling 0800 783 4444.