The Thames Basin

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  • Created on: 18-10-14 12:07
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The Thames Basin
Most developed part of the UK
Population of about 12 million
Covers an area of over 13,000km2
14 counties
58 district councils
33 local planning authorities
Tributaries are Cole, Lee, Kennet, Wey and Loddon
Region mostly in the West
Rural in character dominant land use is agriculture
East is more urbanised and industrialised
Water Supply
Every day approximately 4700 million litres of water is abstracted from the
region's rivers and groundwater
Rain falling in the Cotswolds can be used up to 8 times before it reaches the
Thames Estuary
Over abstraction has led to disastrous effect 5 rivers have low flow
Demand for public water supplies has increased by 1.7% over the past 30 years
each year
Factors which have influenced demand
use of water in home and garden
losses through leakage from distribution systems and consumers' plumbing
population growth and household size
development pressure and economic activity
Industrial development
Area contains much chalk, limestone, sand and gravel which creates
opportunities for mineral extraction
River allows for the import and export of raw materials and finished goods
Heavy industries (car manufacturing) located in flat floodplains cheap land,
water for cooling purposes, river for trade
Residential development
Most major settlements built by rivers supply of drinking water, good
potential for trade and communications, flat sites, fertile silt good for farming
Built on high ground reduce risk of flooding e.g. Oxford
14 zones of change planned, with forecast of housing growth from 2001 to 2016
of about 100000 and employment growth of about 300000 proposed
development in the Thames gateway area is mostly at risk of tidal flooding
Thames floodplains provide important wetlands plans to build new
settlements in area
120000 new settlement will be below sea level

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Raising homes on stilts, building roads on embankments above flood level and
sacrificing large areas of Kent and Essex farmland to floodwaters during tidal
surge to prevent London defences being overwhelmed
High demand for housing in SE England due to large number of jobs in
London, continued in-migration of migrants and to redevelop former industrial
parts of Thames gateway.…read more

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Cotswold Water Park is pressure point variety of developments which focus
on this environmentally sensitive area
Minerals extraction is focused on the CWP
The Park would not exist without its history of mineral workings
Supports wide diversity of wildlife and habitat features of acknowledged
national and international importance
Water areas ecologically important for wildfowl and number of wet meadows
have been designated as Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSIs)
Drainage basin attract considerable attention mudflats ugly eyesore, ripe
for industrial development
Value of wetlands, mudflats…read more


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