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'Chalkiness' in Maidenhead waterway dismissed as harmless

Chalkiness in the waterways has been dismissed as ‘harmless’.

The water in the section of the Maidenhead Waterway near Chapel Arches turned white last week, causing concern among some residents.

Richard Davenport, chairman of trustees at Maidenhead Waterways, said that this was caused by harmless chalk. He added: “There was an incident that happened on the Shanly building site north of the Chapel Arches. They were digging down, pumping out groundwater and hit a chalk deposit. They ceased then but the water they had pumped out came out near Coppa Club. It’s harmless to the wildlife and within 24 hours it had been dispersed.”

Weed now growing in that section of the water is, according to Mr Davenport, the callitriche plant which helps oxygenate the water and provides habitat for fish.

W In Cookham, the ‘invasive’ weed azolla, which smothers other plant life, has been spreading in Strande Water.

Mr Davenport said a shipment of Canadian weevils, which eat azolla ‘voraciously’, are inbound and will prevent the weed from spreading through the waterway.

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