Northampton contaminated fountain work to cost £50k

The water fountain at Northampton's Market Square
Image caption The council had wanted the fountain turned back on but is first seeking local views

Work on a fountain in Northampton to make it more resistant to bacterial contamination is to cost £50,000.

The borough council is to ask residents and town centre businesses if they want the Market Square fountain restarted.

It was turned off when regular water tests revealed higher than normal levels of bacteria.

The council said it had been working with a variety of specialists to see if low-level contamination of the water can be completely prevented.

Specialists recommend the remodelling of the fountain to include a raised pool around the water spouts that will make contamination far less likely.

A council website consultation will be run throughout the summer so that people can have their say on whether they support the cost of work to turn the fountain back on, or whether it should be turned off for good.

Tim Hadland, cabinet member for regeneration said: "We have just announced a major programme to improve the attractiveness of the town centre to visitors and businesses.

"We know the fountain is very popular, particularly in weather like we have currently, but we can't ignore the fact that a significant amount of money would need to be spent to be sure that the risk of contamination, however low level, is as controlled as possible.

'So we will ask people using the town centre whether they think this is a good investment, or whether we should leave the fountain switched off."

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