Llanishen Reservoir reopens for swimming after 'swimmers' itch' fear – Wales Online

According to Welsh Water, test results confirmed that the water quality at Llanishen Reservoir was “excellent”
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Cardiff's Llanishen Reservoir will reopen for open-water swimming and stand-up paddleboarding after they were paused due to a suspected case of 'swimmer's itch'.
The venue in north Cardiff re-opened on Friday, July 28. But on Thursday, July 27, Welsh Water said that following an unconfirmed case of 'swimmer's itch' open-water swimming sessions and stand-up paddleboarding hire were suspended "until further notice".
However, other water activities such as canoes, kayaks and sailing were allowed, while self-launch paddleboarding was also permitted. On Monday, September 4, Welsh Water confirmed that both activities would commence later in the week.
Read more: Llanishen Reservoir price list for watersports as Cardiff venue prepares to open
According to Welsh Water, test results confirmed that the water quality at Llanishen Reservoir, where the watersports activites take place, were "excellent". In a statement, they wrote: "Lisvane & Llanishen Reservoirs have experienced a fantastic first month of opening with thousands of visitors enjoying the visitor centre, walks and watersports on offer.
"Following an incident of suspected swimmers itch, some of the water activities were suspended in July. This was a huge disappointment to many visitors and Welsh Water would like to thank everyone for bearing with them over the past month whilst an investigation has taken place.
"Test results have confirmed that the water quality at Llanishen Reservoir continues to be excellent in terms of inland bathing water bacterial standards, and with no blue green algae or blooms present. However as no ‘off the shelf’ test is available for the microscopic worm that causes swimmer’s itch, partners at the Environment Centre Wales at Bangor University have been developing one for Welsh Water."
According to Professor Davey Jones from the School of Natural Sciences at Bangor University, cases of swimmer's itch appeared to be increasing across Europe and was becoming an "emerging problem". Bangor University said that a microscopic worm has been found that may cause swimmer’s itch. These worms are naturally occurring and more prevalent during summer months, but when water temperatures drop, the risks are significantly reduced.
Jack Bailey, the Activity Manager at Welsh Water said they had taken advice from Public Health Wales and were closely following their guidance. Open water swimming and stand-up paddle board hire sessions will resume on Wednesday, September 6. For those interested in taking part in such activities, sessions will be available to book online, which you can find out more here.
For the past seven years, Welsh Water has been working with partners and the local community to bring the reservoirs back into operational use. The site has opened to visitors for food, sports activities, walks and wildlife.
Once a popular sailing, fishing, and walking spot, in 2001 it came under threat when the site was fenced off and ultimately drained by American-owner power giant Western Power Distribution as it repeatedly tried and failed to get planning permission for 300 homes at the site.
Members of the community vowing to fight for its future formed the Reservoir Action Group (RAG). They successfully campaigned for many years to save the reservoirs from the housing development. In 2016 Welsh Water stepped in to safeguard it for the future, purchasing a 999-year lease for the site from Celsa Steel which had bought it two years earlier from Western Power Distribution.
The water company began ambitious plans to bring the reservoirs back into operational use, with its official opening taking place at the end of July. This is how it looks now.

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