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Water use survey 2014

14th April 2014

In January this year we sent surveys to a representative sample of our household customers asking for information about their domestic water use.  We had a very good response with nearly 8,000 of the 25,000 customers we approached, returning their completed surveys to us.  This gives us a very good picture of water use amongst our household customers.

A huge thank you to all of you who replied!

The information you provided will form an integral part of our planning for the next 25 years. Water is a precious and finite resource and if we get it wrong and find demand outstripping supply, there’s no easy, quick fix; that’s why we have to plan so far ahead.

We’re fortunate in this area as our water supplies are naturally resilient and we’ve never had to impose restrictions, even in the long hot summer of 1976.  However, that doesn’t mean we can be complacent.  Every five years we undertake an in-depth study of water sources called our Water Resources Management Plan, which we review each year to ensure that we’re not caught out by a change in circumstances.

For many years now we have focused on reducing demand rather than increasing supply and this has resulted in a year-on-year downward trend.  For this we thank each and everyone of our customers.

Those of you who sent back your surveys will recall that we offered three cash prizes to three lucky customers.  We randomly selected three customers as follows:

  • 1st prize of £250: Liza Parsons of Bournemouth
  • 2nd prize of £150: Mr Larry Spiers of Bournemouth 
  • 3rd prize of £100: Ian Miles of Downton

Congratulations to our three winners!

What our 8,000 respondents had to say – some highlights:

  • Showering is now much more common than taking a bath, with the average person showering 5 times a week and taking just one bath a week
  • 41% of households still have an old-style single-flush toilet
  • 66% of households have a dishwasher and 98% have a washing machine
  • 58% of customers with gardens use a watering can (37% of whom fill it from a water butt); 16% use a hose; and only 3% use a sprinkler. The rest rely on rainfall and we’ve had plenty of that this winter!

So, we know the majority of our customers are already thinking about the amount of water they use.  If we can persuade the rest to do the same, there’s every reason to believe that our children’s children will be able to enjoy a healthy supply of water in the years to come.

For further information please contact:

Bournemouth Water