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IMPORTANT NEWS - With effect from the 1 April 2018 the way that Developer Services charge for their work is changing. 

Please click here to find out more.

How do I get a new building connected to the water supply?

Print out our New connections application form, complete it, sign it and send it to us together with any supporting information which will assist us when carrying out the survey. 

The process is explained in our step-by-step guide.


How deep should the trench be for water service pipes?

The pipe must be laid at a minimum depth of 750mm but not more than 1,350mm from finished ground level and the trench left open for our inspection. The pipe must also be ducted if it passes through or under wall footings, foundations or any solid floors; the ducts must be large enough for the service pipe to pass through and be withdrawn if necessary. Once your pipework or standpipe and internal stopcock are in place, please call Developer Services on 01202 590059 to arrange an inspection. Please allow five working days for us to carry out these inspections.


How much will my new connection(s) cost?

Each quotation is calculated individually based on the information provided in your application, the location of our existing water network and the amount of work involved.

New connection charges


Who do I contact about sewerage connections?

You will need to contact either Southern Water (0845 272 0845) or
Wessex Water (0845 600 3 600) depending on your location


What is the minimum water pressure?

The minimum water pressure that we must supply to customers at the boundary stopcock of the property is 14.2 PSI (10 metres head) at a flow of 9 litres per minute.


Can I build over an existing water pipe?

Yes, however it is advisable to divert pipework around any proposed buildings or extensions. If this is not possible, you must duct any pipes and fittings under the building so they remain accessible. If in doubt, contact Developer Services on 01202 590059.

You are not allowed to build over or too close to a water main. Please see this document for details: Water Main Protection – building over or close to a public water main


Do you lay the pipework all the way into my property?

No. We lay from our water main to the street boundary of your property. Laying water pipes from the street boundary into your property is your responsibility.  See this typical supply arrangement diagram.


Do I need to carry out a soil survey and report?

We may need an assessment of site conditions in relation to contamination as contaminants and toxic substances in the soil can pose a serious health hazard if they permeate through pipe materials and pollute the water supply. Contaminants can also accelerate the deterioration of unprotected pipe materials, resulting in premature failures, leakage and loss of water quality.

We have an obligation under the Water Supply (Water Fittings) Regulations to safeguard the water supplied through our pipes. All water pipelines must therefore provide adequate protection from contaminants.

For more information, see page 6 of the New connections information book


What type of pipe do I lay on my premises to the boundary?

You will normally lay blue Medium Density Polyethylene (MDPE) unless contaminants are present, in which case a barrier pipe will be required.


Do I need to cap the end of my supply pipes onsite?

Yes, all pipe ends must be capped or taped to prevent ingress to avoid contamination.


What is barrier pipe?

This is a specific type of pipe designed for use in contaminated ground where a normal pipe would be unsuitable to maintain water quality.


What size pipe do I need?

We cannot advise you on the sizing of pipework. You should seek independent advice from a mechanical engineer or your appointed plumbing contractor on the size of pipes needed to meet your flow requirements.


What are infrastructure charges?

They are charges made under Section 146 of the Water Industry Act 1991 for premises being connected to water and sewerage systems for the first time for domestic purposes. This means water used in homes or other premises like offices and shops, as well as water used for personal hygiene and cooking in industrial buildings.

Infrastructure charges


Why do I pay an infrastructure charge to two water companies?

In addition to our infrastructure charge for the water supply, you will also be required to pay a sewerage infrastructure charge if your development drains to a public sewer. Southern Water (0845 272 0845) or Wessex Water (0845 600 3 600) will invoice you when the charge is due. If you have any queries about the invoice you should contact them.


What is ‘self-lay’?

If new mains are needed, developers can choose whether to requesition the water company to do this work, or whether to install the mains themselves or through a self-lay organisation (SLO).

As the appointed water company, we have a duty to safeguard the quality of the public water supply. Maintaining the integrity and quality of the network remains our responsibility. We therefore require recognised proof of competence before a developer or SLO is allowed to lay water mains or services. When the work has been completed to our satisfaction, ownership of the water mains and services transfers to us.

Self-Lay Mains and Service Policy


What are the Water Supply (Water Fittings) Regulations and how do they affect me?

The Regulations set requirements for the design, installation and maintenance of plumbing systems, water fittings and water-using appliances. They are also there to prevent waste, misuse, undue consumption, contamination and erroneous measurement of water. They apply in all types of premises to plumbing systems, water fittings and appliances connected or to be connected to the water supply. They apply to underground pipework, including the service pipe connecting premises to the supplier's water main.

For more information, please see Water Regulations or contact the Water Regulations Advisory Scheme.


Who enforces the water regulations?

We do, through our Water Regulations Department. As a water company we are responsible for the supply of drinking water and have to safeguard its quality. The water regulations allow us to inspect new and existing installations and we can request work to be carried out if necessary.


Can you recommend a plumber?

We don’t recommend individual plumbers, but there is a nationwide Approved Plumber Scheme called WaterSafe. This is a register of plumbers who have shown that they are suitably trained as plumbers and who have passed an assessment on their knowledge of the regulations. The main advantage of using an approved plumber is the right of redress. In addition, they are allowed to start cretain types of work before our consent is given.

Find approved plumbers in your area


What happens if my plumber has not done a job correctly?

If you have had plumbing work completed and you’re not sure if it has been done correctly, please contact us. We’ll send someone to assess whether the work meets the legal requirements. If you used a plumber from the Approved Plumber Scheme they must take responsibility for the work and they can be struck off the scheme if their work is substandard.



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