Updated: 5 April 2024

In October 2020, the Inspector reviewing the MU Planning Application for a new Sewage Treatment Works at Glenfaba House recommended that it be refused.  In his opinion, the application did not demonstrate that alternative sites had been adequately considered and that the Environmental Impact Assessment provided insufficient information to fully determine the impacts of the development, particularly regarding loss of trees and habitat.

In recognition of this we have undertaken a comprehensive review of potential sites to demonstrate that all reasonable alternatives have been considered.  These sites included all the locations reviewed previously by Dalrymple (consultants appointed by the then Department of Transport), other sites identified by the project teams and sites offered from a “Call for Sites” exercise undertaken in 2021.

This review of over 30 sites formed part of feasibility studies that determined the best way forward and considered both the cost and quality of the various options and has formed an integral part of the planning application for this site.

The studies revisited the pump away option and confirmed that the findings of previous assessments remain valid. The pump away options are considerably more expensive from both an operational and capital cost perspective and offer negligible additional benefit in terms of bathing water quality. They also do not align with the Isle of Man’s climate change objectives due to their higher carbon footprint.


Manx Utilities have undertaken the following activities:

  • Tendering and appointment of engineering and environmental consultants, cost consultants, planning supervisors and planning consultants to deliver the scheme;
  • Undertaking a comprehensive feasibility study including site appraisals of over 30 sites, outline designs, cost estimates and whole life costs of shortlisted sites;
  • Engagement with landowners finalising the purchase agreements of land required for the treatment works site (May 2023);
  • Installation of pipelines required for the work in East Quay (undertaken between September 2020 and July 2022 during COVID restrictions)
  • Completion of comprehensive ground investigations and contamination testing;
  • Development of designs for treatment works at Peel at our preferred site;
  • Discussions with Department of Infrastructure (Highways) to confirm concepts for access to proposed site works locations;
  • Submission of a Planning Application including an Environmental Impact Assessment for the treatment works;
  • Approval from Treasury to continue to utilise the previously appointed contractor for the Peel scheme, negating a lengthy procurement process to provide Early Contractor Involvement (ECI) and construction phase works.

After obtaining landowner consent initial ground investigations were carried out in May 2023 with further testing undertaken in January 2024 to provide additional information necessary to finalise the design and to mitigate construction stage risks.

The planning application followed DEFA’s trial Major Planning Applications process and a full planning application for the works at Peel was submitted on 30 November 2023.  A decision is currently awaited.

As a result of the need to de-risk both the land acquisition process and the construction phase of the project, and UK wide manufacturing resource constraints, there has been an extension to the programme originally anticipated.

Options are currently being explored to advance some elements of the works to provide early benefit.  The programme indicates that it should be possible to install the screening equipment in early 2026 to remove solid material from the discharge ahead of the 2026 bathing season and divert and treat a significant portion of the flow, providing significant environmental and public health improvements. We have set a target completion date for the rest of the works for the end of 2026.

The above dates are dependent on receipt of planning by June 2024, there being no appeal by interested parties and no worsening of UK supplier resourcing challenges.


Manx Utilities remain committed to completing phase 2 of the Regional Sewage Treatment Strategy with the construction of sewage treatment works for both Peel and Garff. Progress has not been as fast as was hoped or originally envisaged, with frustrating delays during land acquisition and mobilisation of off-island contractors.  The construction phase programme has been impacted significantly by shortages in the UK labour market with regard to the installation of specialist process equipment. We are arranging a meeting with the Commissioners to provide a more detailed update.

Further quarterly updates on Peel will be provided.


Updated: 5 January 2024

The planning application has been submitted and is now available to view here.

The next scheduled update will be 5 April 2024 with quarterly updates following until the planning application is determined.


Updated 12th December 2023

Manx Utilities’ planning application for the proposed waste water treatment works in Peel has been published by DEFA on the Planning Department portal.

The proposed works will provide modern waste water treatment facilities for Peel and will discharge treated effluent via the existing sea outfall.

The application follows on from the public display and consultation period held at the Centenary Centre and Commissioners’ offices for two weeks in August.  A number of public suggestions were proposed which have now been incorporated into the design, particularly planting around the site boundary. 

On completion this scheme will provide significant environmental benefit, ending the discharge of raw sewage into Peel Bay.

The application can be viewed at https://services.gov.im/planningapplication/services/planning/search.iom and entering reference number 23/01407/B.

Updated: 6 December 2023

The Planning application documents for the new Sewage Treatment Works have been finalised and were submitted on 30 November 2023.  The submission is now undergoing final checks by the Planning Department before they make them available for public access.  The application includes a comprehensive Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA), Flood Risk Assessment, a Statement of Community Involvement and a Road Safety Audit Report amongst others.   


Updated: 10 November 2023

We are working with our consultants to finalise the planning application prior to a formal submission.  The final element of the work has been extended to ensure that all comments from consultees, stakeholders, members of the public and local businesses have been considered.  We will provide a further update when the planning application is submitted later this year.


Updated: 10 October 2023

Further to the public information event held on 16/17 August, the ‘frequently asked questions (FAQs)’ section of our website has been updated to address specific questions asked on feedback forms.

All responses have now been reviewed and the information will be used to help us complete our planning application. The key finding from the analysis is that over 90% of those who submitted feedback are in support of our proposals, which is extremely positive.

The planning submission is now being finalised following minor updates based on feedback received.  It is intended to submit the application in early November.


Updated: 16/17 August 2023

We held a public exhibition at the Peel Centenary Centre which was attended by well over 120 visitors who provided valuable feedback, along with local businesses who attended a bespoke evening session. Manx Utilities would like to thank all those who visited those who viewed the displays which were transferred to the Town Hall from 18 August to the 5 September . 

The feedback is now being reviewed and common themes identified which will become part of the planning application. A set of Frequently Asked Questions has been created which can be found here.


Updated: 2 August 2023

We have carried out additional site investigations at the proposed site to allow us to confirm foundation and drainage solutions.

We are now preparing the Public Exhibition information for the event to be held at the Centenary Centre on:

  • Wed 16 Aug    -         10:00-19:00   PUBLIC
  • Wed 16 Aug    -         19:00-20:00   LOCAL BUSINESSES BY INVITATION ONLY
  • Thu 17 Aug     -         10:00-15:00   PUBLIC

Designs of the works are continuing and will incorporate feedback from the event.


Updated: 4 July 2023

We are continuing the design of the sewage treatment works and remaining sections of pipeline. All ground investigations are now complete. Soil samples are currently being tested and analysed. Once this information is available it will allow the design to be completed.

Meetings have been held with stakeholders as part of the Planning Process and the Public Exhibition will be held on 16/17 August at the Centenary Centre in Peel with a separate evening session for local businesses. Feedback from these sessions will be incorporated into the design ahead of the submission of a formal planning application in September.


Updated: 31 May 2023

The strategy for Peel remains the provision of a regional treatment works within Peel. Treated wastewater will be discharged via the existing Peel outfall which will not prevent a “Good” level of bathing water quality within Peel Bay being achieved as a minimum.

Following the successful completion of our on-site works, ground investigation samples are now being tested to help finalise the layout and foundations for the site. Some on site monitoring is still ongoing to determine ground water levels. Detailed design work is also progressing on the above ground structures with the works being sited to minimise the visual impact from Glenfaba Road.

The type of equipment we have chosen provides for a completely covered treatment process and is coupled with class leading odour control. We currently have 18 sewage treatment works operating around the Island, 13 of which are a similar treatment process to that planned at Peel, many of which are in closer proximity to residences than at our proposed site.

Operational traffic impact will be small, with two tankers each work-day accessing the site to remove sludge. We will ensure that these visits are undertaken outside of commuting hours. Our sites are provided with silent alarms that send notifications to a central control centre so are not audible.

Screening and planting will be provided around the site and it only be lit when service personnel are at the site which during normal operations will be infrequent outside of standard working hours.

We recognise that there will be some disturbance caused by the construction works for a defined period, and we will work with neighbours to minimise this as we did for the recent pipe laying installation undertaken along East Quay.

Stakeholder consultations are continuing as part of the planning process, and we are preparing for a series of exhibition/engagement events in Peel to provide business owners and residents more information about our proposed plans in advance of the formal planning process. Peel Town Commissioners have provided some valuable input into the design process for which we are grateful.

We are planning to hold the consultations in August after which we will review the comments received and look to submit the formal planning application in late 2023.

Further information on our exhibition/engagement events in Peel will be provided in our next update and shared with the community to encourage attendance.


Updated: 3 May 2023

Press Release link:https://www.manxutilities.im/news/2023/may/regional-sewage-treatment-site-agreed-for-peel

Proposed site:


Updated: 20 April 2023

We continue to finalise land purchases and hope to make a formal announcement soon. Consultants are continuing to develop designs for the site and discussions with the Planning Team and other stakeholders continue.

We undertook a Tynwald Briefing on 19 April regarding the Island Plan, which includes the delivery of the Regional Sewage Treatment Strategy for Peel and Garff.  The Island Plan is to be debated in Tynwald on 25 April 2023.

Routine updates will now be published on a monthly basis.


Updated: 5 April 2023

We continue to undertake geotechnical survey work at our preferred site in Peel.


Updated: 22 March 2023

The next update will be provided on 5 April 2023


Updated: 9 March 2023

The Council of Ministers were recently updated with regard to the timeline for delivery of the RSTS2 Projects in order to appraise them and to allow an update to the Island Plan.  Given the time it has taken to resolve the land acquisition requirements for both catchments, completion of the Peel scheme is now anticipated by the end of 2025 and Garff in early 2026.

Ground investigation contractors will be commencing work next week at various sites to allow the designs to be progressed.

Announcements will be made regarding treatment works sites as soon as we possibly can and we thank the people that we have been dealing with for their willingness to engage with us on this important national matter.


Updated: 23 February 2023

The next update will be provided on 9 March 2023.


Updated: 8 February 2023

Whilst we are disappointed that we cannot yet announce that the legal formalities are complete with regard to the procurement of land we are confident that this is imminent. Design work continues as far as is possible without the geotechnical data required to finalise foundation and ground stabilisation details.

The design team will be meeting with the Commissioners on Wednesday 15 February to present the current layout and to discuss building finishes etc.


Updated: 25 January 2023

We are aware there is frustration felt by all of the communities involved, that the nationally significant regional sewage treatment strategy has yet to reach its conclusion.  This frustration is shared by Manx Utilities and we very much hope that it is appreciated that we are progressing as quickly as we can; albeit constrained by the understandable time it can take to negotiate and complete on land acquisitions.  Our team remain committed and are working very hard to deliver regional sewage treatment solutions for the remaining catchments of Peel, Laxey and Baldrine.

We are now entering the final stages of land acquisition for the Peel sewage treatment site.  We are very grateful to the landowner of the preferred site for their flexibility and support whilst formalities are concluded by both parties’ legal representatives. 

Once contracts are signed, this will enable us to gain site access which allows us to immediately progress to the geotechnical investigations, which will finalise the capture of design information.  Once complete, we will be in a position to progress the final design for the Peel regional sewage treatment works.  

In tandem with the negotiations for site acquisition, we will be arranging a meeting with Peel Town Commissioners and our design consultant team to discuss the site layout, building finishes and roof geometry of the works, etc.

We are in the process of appointing a Contractor to undertake the work.


Updated: 11 January 2023

The legal formalities are progressing well and we are working towards the conditional contract for the acquisition of land required for the treatment works to be finalised by the end of the month.  This will allow the geotechnical investigations to be completed and the design to be further progressed.

Due to adverse weather disrupting travel, the design team were unable to meet with Peel Town Commissioners in December, as planned.  The meeting is to be rearranged shortly.


Updated: 20 December 2022

The next update will be provided on 11 January 2023.


Updated: 8 December 2022

Design work continues as far as is possible without the final geotechnical data that will be provided by the ground investigations planned for January. The design team will be meeting with Peel Commissioners on Wednesday 14 December to present the proposed layout of the new works and answer any questions they may have.


Updated: 21 November 2022

Work continues on the design of the new sewage treatment works, although this requires certain details which can only be obtained through on-site geotechnical surveys.  As our access to site for these surveys is subject to the land procurement process, we will now be undertaking these early in the New Year, which should allow sufficient time to achieve the necessary agreements.  The need to respect the land procurement process will unfortunately affect the timing of the submission of the planning application, however we remain committed to delivering this as a priority; as soon as we are able to gather the survey information required.


Updated: 8 November 2022

Work continues on the design of the new sewage treatment works and on completing the land procurement process ahead of the geotechnical investigations programmed for later this month.


Updated: 26 October 2022

A verbal agreement has been reached for the purchase of the preferred parcel of land. The AG’s Chambers are working on a contract that will commit the landowner to selling the land once we have all of the required approvals in place. Non-intrusive surveys have already commenced (topographical, ecological etc), with ground investigations programmed for the end of November once the formal agreement is in place. The design for the new works is underway. The current programme has the submission of the planning application by the end of February. This cannot be any sooner due to the need to have the results of the ground investigation to finalise the design, in particular the slope stabilisation measures. These will not be available until early in the New Year and is dependent on finalising land agreements.


Updated: 12 October 2022

Topographical surveys have been completed on Manx Utilities' owned sites and on the preferred option site in Peel. Discussions are underway with the appointed geotechnical contractor to confirm a programme for completion of the extensive ground investigations required.

Start-up meetings have been held with design engineers for both catchments and work is now underway on the design of the proposed infrastructure.


Updated: 28 September 2022

Contracts have now been awarded for geotechnical investigative works which will be required to inform the design at all locations. These works, along with topographical surveys will commence as soon as possible on Manx Utilities’ owned sites. The remaining surveys will be completed once agreements are in place for the purchase of the outstanding land required.

Start-up meetings will be held with design engineers for both catchments this week.


Updated: 14 September 2022 

Appointments have now been approved (subject to contract) for the design and environmental consultants, quantity surveyors and planning supervisors and start up meetings are being organised. We have held pre-application meetings with the planners to determine the format and deliverables required for a formal Planning application. Other stakeholder discussions are progressing which include land acquisition for each catchment area.


Updated: 1 September 2022

We have now confirmed the scope of works for the design and environmental consultants, quantity surveyors and planning supervisors and are currently finalising appointments. Following this, site investigations and ecological surveys will be procured following stakeholder discussions.  These surveys and investigations are vital to planning applications and developing sustainable designs solutions.

Discussions will be held with Planners in the next month to ensure that our Environmental Impact Assessments cover the appropriate issues and that all achievable mitigations can be implemented.


Updated: 10 August 2022

The next update will be published on 31 August.


Updated: 27 July 2022

Tynwald approved an additional £16.95 million expenditure to the previously approved £23.5 million to complete the Island’s Regional Sewage Treatment Strategy on 19 July 2022.  Work will now progress on providing first time sewage treatment for the remaining catchments of Peel, Baldrine and Laxey, which is to be completed by 2024.

These funds will support the building of a combined treatment plant for Laxey and Baldrine, land acquisition requirements and a treatment facility in Peel.  These funds also cover additions for construction material inflation over the intervening period and also measures taken in the revised designs to address the concerns of residents.  Part will also be invested to support the additional needs at Meary Veg Sewage Treatment facility which processes sludge from the regional plants.  The regional strategy supports Government's carbon targets.

Our team are now preparing for detailed ground investigation activities to be undertaken by specialists and for the detailed design phase which will be a precursor to public exhibitions showing the proposal prior to planning applications being submitted.


Updated: 13 July 2022

We continue to undertake stakeholder engagement activities leading up to the Motion being placed before Tynwald on 19 July 2022.  In addition to the Briefing in the Barrool Suite for All Tynwald Members on 29 June 2022, we have also organised presentations by APEM Ltd on bathing water quality for Tynwald Members and also Local Authorities this week.  The bathing water presentation is being conducted by APEM’s principle aquatic scientist who has worked with the UK Environment Agency as the national policy advisor on bathing water and was involved in the creation of the Isle of Man’s Water Quality (Bathing Water Standards and Objectives) Scheme 2021.

We remain committed to delivering the final stages of the Sewage Treatment Strategy for the Island to bring an end to the disposal of raw sewage to sea in the remaining catchments of Baldrine, Laxey and Peel.


Updated: 30 June 2022

The next update will take place following the Motion being presented to Tynwald on 19 July 2022 for additional funding.  In the meantime we provided a briefing to All Tynwald Members on 29 June 2022, in advance of the Sitting.


Updated: 14 June 2022

The Council of Ministers have now approved the submission of a motion to the July sitting of Tynwald [https://www.tynwald.org.im/business/opqp/sittings/20212026/MUA-REG-SEW-TREAT-MEMO.pdf] where additional funding will be requested to allow the completion of the Island’s remaining regional works in Garff and Peel, along with upgraded sludge reception facilities at Meary Veg.


Updated: 27 May 2022

We are currently focused on obtaining the required approvals to progress the programme, and hope to provide more details in our next scheduled update on 13 June or as soon as possible after that.


Updated: 16 May 2022

Work continues in earnest to gain the necessary approvals to allow the preferred schemes in both Peel and Garff to progress.  Business cases were presented to Treasury for each location last week and we remain on course to submit detailed planning applications later this year.

We continue to meet with local stakeholder groups on a regular basis and our Chair Rob Callister MHK recently attended a meeting in Garff and our officers met stakeholders in Peel.

As a follow-up to a recent enquiry, specialist consultant analyses has confirmed that the concentration of PCBs in the Raggatt leachate are minimal and well below laboratory detection limits accepted by the UK Environment Agency.  The review further confirmed that a high percentage of PCBs would be removed or absorbed through the sewage treatment process that is being proposed by Manx Utilities


Updated: 3 May 2022

Work continues in earnest to gain the necessary approvals to allow the preferred schemes in both Peel and Garff to progress as a matter of urgency.

The software that controls the pumping station on Peel Promenade has been modified in order to allow sewage to only be discharged on an outgoing tide (when weather conditions permit). This change was implemented on the 1st May and should reduce the impact of the sewage discharge on bathing water quality during dry weather.


Updated: 19 April 2022

It can now be confirmed that the Manx Utilities Board, on Friday 25 March, agreed that a regional approach for both Garff and Peel will be progressed on the basis that it provides the best solution in terms of both cost and quality.  The programme is now very much in the delivery phase and the team have commenced work on all of the approvals required so that the build phase can commence. 

Exact details of preferred sites will not be released until we have completed all of the governance necessary to acquire the sites we need as we have a duty of care to safeguard anyone we may be in discussion with.  The project team can confirm that in Garff the preferred solution is for a single treatment works to serve both Laxey and Baldrine at a location between the two villages.  As such there are no plans for anything other than pumping stations at either the Cairn site or on the Glen Garwick estate.  Unfortunately this cannot be avoided but will have minimal impact on the surrounding areas.  All of this remains subject to planning approvals.

We continue to work closely with representatives in both catchments and would like to thank them for their valued time to date in assisting progression of the options.


Updated: 4 April 2022

The Manx Utilities Board met on Friday 25 March and agreed a way forward for both Garff and Peel.  We are committed to updating local stakeholder groups and land owners in the coming days as a first priority.

We are now in the delivery phase of this essential programme and are looking forward to working with Government on this aspect of the Island Plan to deliver the final stages of modern sewage treatment to Garff and Peel and importantly complete the overall sewerage treatment solution for the Isle of Man.


Updated: 21 March 2022

Representatives from Manx Utilities met with Peel Commissioners on the evening of the 17 March to provide an update on progress.

Project teams have completed their studies and will be making recommendations to the Manx Utilities Board on Friday the 25 March as to the best way forward for both Peel and Garff on a combined cost and quality basis.


Updated: 7 March 2022

Representatives from Manx Utilities met with Garff Commissioners and local MHKs on the evening of the 23 February to provide an update on progress.

Project teams remain on course to make recommendations to the Manx Utilities Board on Friday the 25 March.  Whole Life Costing exercises are being finalised and the conclusions of the studies compiled to determine the best way forward for both areas on a combined cost and quality basis.

An informal meeting was held with representatives of Peel Town Commissioners and a representative of the local community on Thursday 3 February.  The meeting was very constructive and discussed a wide range of concerns.  It was agreed that regular meetings of a similar nature would be useful moving forward, with greater community representation to be considered.


Updated: 21 February 2022

The final phase of the sewage treatment strategy for the Island is focused on delivering first time sewage treatment for Laxey, Baldrine and Peel.  Options are being fully assessed for local treatment works’ locations as well as pump away solutions to establish a positive outcome as soon as possible.

A rigorous ‘coarse screening’ process has been completed scoring over 40 potential sites against criteria comprising:

  • Adequate space
  • Zoning/land use
  • Proximity to residential areas
  • Access
  • Conservation/high landscape or coastal value and scenic significance
  • Elevation/topography
  • Ecological barriers

For each area the coarse screening exercise has led to the selection of a small number of options which are now being looked at in more detail in order to determine the preferred solution to take forward. A concept design (comprising site layout and pipeline routes) for each option has been created and a desktop environmental review has been completed (including carbon footprint calculations) to allow a further ‘fine screening’ assessment to be undertaken which adds a further level of rigour where the following criteria are being assessed in greater detail:

  • Land use/zoning
  • Future growth capacity
  • Proximity to residential areas
  • Environmental impact
  • Carbon cost
  • Access
  • Complexity & deliverability
  • Community opportunity & benefit

Each of the shortlisted sites and pump away solutions are being scored against the above and are then being costed with the ‘whole life costs’ developed over periods of 25 and 50 years.

The cost and quality scores will be combined on a 70:30 quality: cost ratio (also undergoing a sensitivity check at 50:50) to ensure the best solution is chosen, not necessarily the cheapest.

This is one of the most comprehensive reviews of sites and solutions that Manx Utilities have undertaken and each site has to be considered individually and in some cases in combination. 


It is our intention to have preferred options for all areas identified by the end of March.  This is subject to positive land owner engagement.  Once the preferred options have been agreed we will be able to confirm the delivery programme. We remain on course for completion of all works by the end of 2024.

Water Quality

The bathing water quality standards required for any solution proposed are defined by Tynwald and will be in accordance with parameters set by DEFA.  Manx Utilities are designing to achieve the ‘Good’ standard of the 2006 EU Bathing Water Directive as required by the Isle of Man’s Water Pollution (Bathing Water Standards and Objectives) Scheme 2021. 

We are also investigating what may be required should this be changed to the ‘Excellent’ element of the standard in the future; this will ensure that there is nothing within the design that prohibits any enhancement required in the future should the local Commissioners decide that Blue Flag beach status is an aspiration they would like to work towards.

Blue flag status requires ‘Excellent’ bathing water quality along with the adoption of over 30 other environmental and hygiene/facility factors including control of dogs, provision of lifeguards and many other aspects which would need consideration by local Commissioners.  Water quality is only covered in four of the ‘blue flag’ criteria.  Further details can be found here: https://www.blueflag.global/criteria

The discharge of any flows into rivers is controlled by DEFA whom determine acceptability and appropriate parameters.

National Importance, Long Term View and Costing

Resolving the sewage treatment issue in the remaining catchments of Garff and Peel is a matter of national importance.  Manx Utilities has sought assistance from professional consulting engineers with a robust and extensive international reputation who are also very familiar with the Isle of Man, the existing sewerage infrastructure and the operation of local and central government.

Whole-life-cost Net Present Value or ‘NPV’ calculations over 25-year and 50-year periods have been developed.  These are pragmatic assessment periods that take into account the best estimates for the civil, mechanical and electrical engineering capital and operating expenditure for the solutions proposed.

Sewage pumping costs will be included in the NPV calculations for all options short-listed to ensure these are adequately assessed.  Cost sensitivity analysis is also forming part of these calculations to determine if any selection ranking is influenced by construction cost or power cost rises – as seen recently.

Electricity consumption for all solutions is based on all supplies being taken from future national infrastructure, ensuring it does not assume benefits which are unrealistic.

The impact of tankering sludge is being taken into full consideration in the selection process.

Designs will be based on the current and predicted Population Equivalent (PE) values for 2021 and 2050.  These values take into account current population and an assessment based on published regional plans to predict future demands.  Future expansion beyond the 2050 PE value will also be considered.

  • Five preferred sites for local treatment are now under consideration with concept designs complete
  • Discussions with landowners have commenced to help determine the viability of each option
  • Two alternate pumping options are being reviewed (into the IRIS network and direct to Meary Veg)
  • The need for extension, replacement or relocation of the outfall pipe for all solutions is being reviewed
  • Options for short term improvement are being investigated
  • A ‘Peel Consultative Group’ is being set up to improve community liaison
  • It is currently planned for the Raggatt Leachate issue to be resolved as part of this project
  • The pipeline scheme along East Quay is ongoing. This scheme is critical to the delivery of all options
  • Issues identified with the unsuccessful planning application for a works at Glenfaba House will be considered prior to any further application being made for any site;
  • Further public consultation will be undertaken prior to any planning applications being submitted