Graf UK notches a hat-trick at Saltway
A farm shop that was relocated with an emphasis on saving overheads AND the environment has made use of three different water management systems from specialist drainage solutions manufacturer Graf UK.
Saltway Farm Shop, on the outskirts of Banbury (coincidentally where Graf UK is based) features a new Graf UK sewage treatment plant, grease separator and rainwater harvesting system, all manufactured from 100% recycled plastic.
They were specified by Banbury builder Andrew Pinfold Ltd for the £600,000 redevelopment of the farm shop that sells fruit and vegetables, jams and preserves, domestic fuel, animal feed, bedding and accessories, gardening implements, fishing bait and Christmas trees, alongside a café and fortnightly car boot sales.
Owner Nigel Morris, who runs the business with his wife Carole, son Adam and daughter Amy, as well as five employees, wanted their new farm shop (they relocated from a leased site a few miles away) to be as self-sufficient as possible, particularly in the light of the Covid pandemic.
As the farm is not on mains drainage, the new 3,000ft2 farm shop building required a dedicated sewage treatment plant and a grease separator which reduces the flow rate of the wastewater to allow solids to sink and settle in the sludge trap. Fats, which have a lower density than water, then float to the surface and can be removed.
Nigel also chose to have a Platin rainwater harvesting system and is using solar panels on the roof of the new building.
All the systems were installed by local specialist sub-contractor The Septic Tank Store who have worked with Graf UK for four years. Wayne Clark, who is managing director of the family business, brought almost 40 years’ experience to the project.
To cater for 44 people, the sewage treatment system required five 6,500l tanks, one of which was a surge tank. These were installed into a single excavation of ironstone rock over three days by a 21-tonne digger. The surge tank and 3,000l grease trap were the first ones of their kind he had installed.
The 7,500l rainwater tank was also installed below ground in another excavation by a 14-tonne digger, and like the sewage treatment plant, backfilled with gravel and concrete. The whole project took seven days.
“The Graf system are all quality products, manufactured from polyethylene not GRP,” said Wayne.
Nigel Morris explained that due to the Covid lockdowns they had only just started using the systems.
“We’ve been happy with them so far,” he said.
“We had to have the sewage treatment plant as we’re not on mains drainage, but the rainwater harvesting wasn’t quite as necessary. We just wanted to save buying quite so much water. The builder looked at several different systems and thought the Graf ones would be the best. As time goes by and we have some water bills we should see how economical they are in the long term and hopefully they will pay for themselves.”
Nigel Morris – Saltway Farm Shop Owner
He added: “But our reasons were not purely economic. Covid has shown all of us the impact we are having on the environment and we wanted to do all we could to mitigate that.”