Belfast Telegraph

Pipe work for Bonham Carter garden

A radioactive waste pipe is being removed from the garden of Hollywood star Helena Bonham Carter.

The four-mile underground pipe, which runs under the Oxfordshire home of the actress and her partner, director Tim Burton, is thought to contain low levels of radioactivity in the scale and silt which have built up inside the pipe for decades.

Workmen from Research Sites Restoration Ltd (RSRL) have been removing the pipe since early November and further works over the next few months will clear equipment and a further section of pipeline.

Angela Vincent, a spokeswoman for RSRL, said local residents had nothing to worry about.

She said: "From our previous experience excavating other sections of the pipeline, excavation and removal of the pipe will not release airborne contamination.

"Nevertheless, as a precautionary measure, airborne radiation detectors will be positioned in the area for reassurance purposes.

"We have respected the privacy of our neighbours and kept them informed of RSRL's intentions and progress throughout."

The pipe had been discharging treated water, which included diluted chemical and radioactive components from the Harwell site, into the River Thames since the late 1940s.

When RSRL stopped discharging treated water into the river nine months ago, the decision was taken to decommission the pipe.

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