Pirate FM News

Cornwall's Water Bills Drop

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Published by the Pirate FM News Team at 8:26am 5th February 2013.

From April, Cornwall will be paying less for its water.

The regulator, OFWAT, has announced south-west bills will rise by an average of £10 a year but that will be absorbed by a £50 a year government discount, announced at the last budget.

It takes the average annual bill to £499.

That is still higher than anywhere else in the country.

Around 13 thousand customers switching to a meter are also forecast to reduce their bills by an average of between £300 and £400 this year.

South West Water says exact charges paid by customers will vary according to the services they use, their tariff, the rateable value of their property or the amount of water they use.

South West Water says its £168 million investment and charges package for 2013/14 is part of a £700 million plus programme between 2010 and 2015 which supports 4,500  jobs in the wider, regional economy.

Investment highlights for 2013/14 include:

  • Upgrades to water treatment works, reservoirs, and pipe networks supplying East Devon, Plymouth, West Cornwall, South East Cornwall, Okehampton and South Devon
  • Expanding the multi-award winning  'Upstream Thinking' programme to restore wetlands across the region and safeguard future tap water quality
  • Renewing sewers in Torquay, Penzance, St Just, Bodmin, Bude, Bideford, Northam, Appledore and Moretonhampstead
  • Upgrading waste water treatment works serving Plymstock, Plymouth, East Devon, West Devon, Truro, Kingsbridge and Torpoint  
  • Offering more apprenticeship opportunities for South West youngsters    


South West Water Chief Executive Chris Loughlin said: "It's vital we continue to invest because having up-to-date water and sewerage infrastructure is just as important as good rail and road links and high speed broadband. We know what we do underpins the quality of life we all enjoy in the South West and also helps local businesses grow.

"We know the cost in the past of modernising particularly our sewerage network has been high for customers which is why we are particularly pleased the £50 reduction will be implemented from this year onward.

"Thank you to the Government and Defra for making the reduction a reality and thanks to everyone including MPs of all parties, the Consumer Council for Water, pensioner groups and the regional media who together with thousands of individual customers helped build a successful case for the region alongside us over many years.

"Household customers will have the reduction automatically and clearly applied to their bills. They need take no action, just look out for the line 'Government Contribution' on your bill during 2013/14."

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