CIWEM partners with Construction Industry Research and Information Association (CIRIA)

The Chartered Institution of Water and Environmental Management (CIWEM) is pleased to announce a new partnership with the Construction Industry Research and Information Association (CIRIA). Alongside Water UK, we are working with United Utilities, Anglian Water, Northumbrian Water, Severn Trent Water, Southern Water, South West Water, Wessex Water, Thames Water and Yorkshire Water to develop and deliver bespoke Sustainable Urban Drainage Systems (SuDS) training that will enable these Water and Sewerage Companies (WaSCs) to adopt SuDS, coming under the definition of ‘sewer’, following implementation of the Sewerage Sector Guidance. The training is not simply a question of adoption (i.e. compliance) but is to understand SuDS and good practice generally to develop technical competence needed to assess Section 104 design submissions (as well as responding to Pre-Development Enquiries as conceptual drainage designs are developed).

CIRIA’s work has covered sustainable drainage since the early 1990’s, developing guidance, websites and capacity building to provide confidence in SuDS delivery. Their guidance, particularly the SuDS Manual (C753) and initiatives on promoting SuDS good practice is regarded by many as the best source of information on SuDS in the UK (CIWEM, ICE 2016) and is continuously referred to in national and local policy. This makes them the perfect partner for this long-term training initiative.

The project will be co-led by Darren Eckford, Head of Learning and Development at CIWEM and Paul Shaffer, Associate (Water Management) at CIRIA. Darren and Paul bring extensive experience of designing, developing and delivering impactful, high quality training solutions and SuDS specific training, and they share a mission to improve the competence and confidence of practitioners to deliver good practice. The balance of skill sets and experience they bring means they are fully cognisant of the range of highly nuanced issues in the field, the way in which delegates consume information and hence, the need for engaging training content that will achieve the best outcomes. A cohort of the industry’s most highly regarded SuDS professionals has been assembled from organisations including WSP, The Environmental Protection Group (EPG), McCloy Consulting and Illman Young to deliver the 15 training modules.

To help support the smooth implementation of the standardised set of delivery procedures and to share knowledge and enable upskilling across the sector through this training programme, the WaSCs involved in the development of this training have negotiated an agreement whereby those working for Local Authorities can access this training and upskill their employees at a subsidised rate in 2020. For further details please contact the CIWEM Learning and Development Team at

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