Nick Gibb MP said the visit on June 17 was at the invitation of Southern Water to discuss its plans to reduce discharges.
Also on the visit were farmer Rupert Langmead, Emma Mackendrick, from Adames Flansham farm, John Hall, from the Summerly Estate who was a Felpham resident representative, Paul Cann, principal drainage engineer, Arun District Council, and Kevin Macknay, West Sussex County Council flood risk management team).“Over the last year I have been holding meetings with local farmers concerned about discharges of untreated wastewater flooding farm land,” Mr Gibb said.
"I’ve also held meetings with Felpham residents’ representatives to discuss pollutants on the beach and foul water leaks in Limmer Lane.
"The visit to Lidsey was to assist all sides understand the issues and how they can be resolved.“We saw first hand how the Lidsey plant treats waste water and how storm overflow surcharges are handled.
"We raised the issue of the 10 days of surcharges into the Lidsey Rife that took place in January.“It is clear that Southern Water are determined to reduce surcharges.
"They are investing £20 million in upgrading plant at Lidsey and securing the waste water pipe system to reduce the ingress of ground water and surface water into the sewerage system, for which it was not designed.“The expansion of the Lidsey plant will mean it can increase the volume of water it treats from 129 litres per second to 203 litres per second.“Together with Rupert Langmead, Emma McLaren and John Hall, we emphasised to Southern Water the importance of reducing and then eliminating sewage discharges, given the damage they cause to bathing water, people’s health and to farm land.“Further meetings with Southern Water will take place to assess how to reduce the infiltration of ground water into the sewer system.”