The HBC / Southern Water / Portsmouth Water Q&A

It was interesting that this afternoon’s meeting at the Civic Plaza was termed the ‘Southern Water Broadcast’ by Havant Borough Council, at least for those of us who watched it online. We thought it had been billed as a public question-and-answer session, scrutinising both water companies, chaired by Havant Borough Council on behalf of its residents.

Team Havant!

Making the headlines on this evening’s South Today, it appeared that the BBC’s former Brighton and Hove reporter, Sean Killick, managed to delay the start of the meeting, much to the consternation of ‘Mrs. Angry’ in the background, while filing his report live from the Civic Plaza.

Let’s start by saying ‘Hats off’ to Alex Rennie for hosting the event, and to Bob Taylor, the CEO who came along to represent his own company, Portsmouth Water. The executive team at Southern Water, however, clearly had more pressing engagements, sending along everybody’s favourite PR chappy and another former Brighton and Hove reporter, Sam Underwood, accompanied by ‘Varsha’, who during a slightly uncomfortable start to her pitch appeared to be attempting a stand-up act.

Sit back and watch the whole meeting by taking the link above, or dip into some of the key points using the links below:

Link_1Alex’s Introduction
Link 2In the absence of a Southern Water, Sam Underwood kicks off
Link 3Sam’s entertaining explanation of the bottle of water being handed around – “It’s not safe to drink…”
Link 4Varsha’s ‘stand up’ kicks off her presentation on Water Recycling
Link 5James Kisack
Link 7‘Hi there, me again….’ Portsmouth Water’s perspective on why recycled water will have no adverse impact on the reservoir
Link 8Everything that Southern Water say is true….
Link_9The new planning application for tunnelling rather than digging
Link_10Ian Frost, Southern Water, presents the company’s approach to engagement and consultation
Link_11Alex Rennie kicks off the Q&A

So, positive PR points to Alex for setting the stage and taking on the potentially tricky role of Chair. However, those of us watching from home couldn’t help knocking off a few of those points since it looked as if Alex had three-line-whipped his councillors into signing up to the Eventbrite link, seating them as an ‘environmental buffer’, if you’ll excuse the pun, between the panel at the front and the residents out of camera-shot.