The complex project to replace the antiquated lead plumbing in Drive Mansions with a new high pressure mains water system is now complete. This project was begun in 2008, but due to its complexity as well as other priorities, only came to fruition in 2014. Before this new water-main was installed, the flats were supplied by lead down pipes from water tanks in the roof space. Not only were the tanks a potential health hazard, but the lead was over 100 years and fairly brittle. If a lead pipe were to split, the water damage would have been substantial.
The break tank (left) is fully installed. This is filled from the mains to give Drive Mansions a steady reserve of water so that we can maintain pressure at all times, and also give some reserve in the case of a water outage. However due to the heavy demand for water from the 105 flats, it doesn't take long to drain the tanks!
The three pumps (right) are also fully installed. These supply water from the break tank through the pipework that runs across the roof space of each block and then down the walls in the light wells and into the individual flats. A computer controls the pumps so that the load is shared between the 3 pumps as demand requires.