Toxic lake in Ashford thrown £150,000 lifeline

Contributed by editor on Feb 19, 2017 - 11:00 AM

A range of measures to improve the quality of the water at Conningbrook Lakes Country Park have been rubber stamped by the Ashford Borough Council Cabinet.

The investment of up to £150,000 will ensure the ongoing establishment of the lake, but dog owners will still be warned not to let their pets enter the water due to the toxic algae.

The Council commissioned Laguna Science to provide expert advice and recommendations on how to best manage the maintenance of the main lake to restrict the development of the naturally occurring blue-green algae and invasive aquatic weed.

The measures include applying blue dye and a chalk dressing, the introduction of new aquatic plants, weed cutting and harrowing and installation of an aeration system.

The treatment can be introduced over time.

Conningbrook Lakes  Photo: Ashford Borough Council

Cllr Jessamy Blanford, portfolio holder for parks and open spaces, said: “Advice from the consultants shows that these measures used in unison will provide the best opportunity to tackle the challenges the lake faces.

“It was disappointing that last summer we had to cancel several events at Conningbrook Lakes because of the problems described in this report. It is essential for the Council to take steps to resolve these problems to enable the various water-based sports to take place, such as sailing and kayaking, so that residents of all ages can learn new skills and have an enjoyable time with new sports in the countryside.”

The investment will be met by the Council initially and then drawn from section 106 payments due from the housing development attached to the country park.

The lake is open for organised water sports activities only.

Although the park is fully open to members of the public they are reminded to obey the signage to not go in the water and particularly to keep dogs on leads and not let them go in the water at any time.

For further details on the country park visit .

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