IT COULD be the beginning of the end for Southampton’s most notorious pong.

City councillors could next week give the green light to a new sewage works in Woolston that would spell the end of four decades’ worth of overwhelming odours.

Plans for the £60 million works were handed in by Southern Water last autumn, after decades of complaints from long-suffering residents living near to the site.

The current works in Victoria Road date back to 1966, and have led to pungent whiffs plaguing nearby residents and business-owners.

They have long campaigned for new works to rid the area of the whiff, which has been so bad that it has forced businesses to close for the day.

Last spring, Southern Water announced plans to overhaul the site and replace the industrial-style works with a sleek, wave inspired new building.

They hope that it will reduce smells emanating from the site and also ensure treated water leaving it will meet new European Union standards.

In September 2011 the water company was fined £25,000 after untreated raw sewage leaked into Southampton Water.

Shellfish beds were closed for weeks after up to 200 litres of human excrement and sewage a second poured into the Itchen Estuary over 26 hours.

Southern Water held a two-day exhibition of the plans last July, which was attended by 160 people.

Speaking last year, Southern Water’s head of wastewater assets, Mark Thompson, said: “We know smells from the current treatment works can cause problems for residents, which is one of the reasons we’re keen to start work as soon as possible.

“We’re committed to redeveloping the site and creating a modern treatment works to serve Woolston long into the future.”

The city council’s planning panel meets next Tuesday to decide on the plans.

If they grant approval, work would be likely to begin later this year.