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Identity Statement

Reference code(s): MCC/CL/L/EMD
Held at: London Metropolitan Archives
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Date(s): 1934-1965
Level of description: Collection
Extent: 5.16 linear metres
Name of creator(s): MCC | Middlesex County Council x Middlesex County Council


Administrative/Biographical history:

The phenomenal growth of population in Middlesex from early 1920s brought problems of peculiar difficulty in sewage disposal. These were partly offset by the district councils extending their local purification works but it was clear that the problem could best be met by co-ordination and centralisation of treatment.

After intensive investigation and report by its consulting engineers, under the guidance of John Duncan Watson, the County Council with difficulty secured one of the last Unemployment Grants and obtained powers to construct and operate a system of trunk sewers, with sewage purification and sludge disposal works, to serve Western Middlesex. The undertaking came into operation in 1935-36 and included the Mogden works, then the largest and most modern full-treatment plant in the world.

Further powers were obtained in 1938 for a similar undertaking to serve North and East Middlesex. Although the Second World War delayed the project, the new works were in operation by 1963. The East Middlesex works served 14 local authorities covering an area of 95 square miles and a population of 710,000. The system included 24 miles of trunk sewers, with a flow of 32,000,000 gallons a day.


Scope and content/abstract:

Records of the Middlesex County Council Clerk's Legal Department relating to the East Middlesex Drainage Scheme, 1934-1965, including conferences and correspondence between the MCC and over local authorities; reports on sewerage and waste disposal; papers relating to boreholes; papers regarding the Cuffley Brook Sewer, East Barnet Branch Sewer, High Level Sewer, Lee Valley Main Sewer, Tottenham Low and High Level Sewers, Chingford Sewer, Waltham Holy Cross Branch Sewer and Wood Green Sewer; papers relating to trade effluent agreements; protective clauses and notices; purchase of sites; electricity lines near the works; contracts and supplies; acquisition of and access to land and sludge disposal.

Access & Use

Language/scripts of material:

System of arrangement:

MCC/CL/L/EMD-1: General

Conditions governing access:

Available for general access.

Conditions governing reproduction:

Copyright to these records rests with the Corporation of London.

Finding aids:

Please see online catalogues at:

Archival Information

Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition:

Acquired with the records of its parent authority, the Middlesex County Council, and with successor authorities.

Allied Materials

Related material:

See also MCC/CL/EMD.

Publication note:

For further information on the history of the Middlesex County Council please see Middlesex by Sir Clifford Radcliffe (2 editions, 1939 and 1953), LMA Library reference 97.09 MID; and The County Council of the Administrative County of Middlesex: 76 years of local government, 1 April 1889 to 31 March 1965, by Middlesex County Council (1965), LMA library reference S97.09 MID.

Description Notes

Archivist's note:

Rules or conventions:
Compiled in compliance with General International Standard Archival Description, ISAD(G), second edition, 2000; National Council on Archives Rules for the Construction of Personal, Place and Corporate Names, 1997.

Date(s) of descriptions:
April to June 2009

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