Water bills to be frozen as cash saved is returned to customers

Hartlepool Water will not increase its bills while Northumbria Water is adding 13 to its average bill for the next financial year.
Hartlepool Water will not increase its bills while Northumbria Water is adding 13 to its average bill for the next financial year.

Hartlepool Water has said it will not be increasing its bills for the next financial year.

But Northumbria Water has said it will be increasing its costs by £12 a year for its customers as it works on improving its system.

Hartlepool Water has said it has decided on a freeze bills despite inflation and is committed to a multimillion pound investment programme for 2017/18

It ways money saved through efficiencies is being returned to customers, with £15million investment is planned on maintaining and improving essential services

It added water services will cost 37p per day per household, or £135.40 per year, on average, with most bills today lower than they were three years ago.

The company, owned by Anglian Water, said it was able to keep bills low because of the efficient way it’s running the business.

The improvement programme will be ploughed into areas that matter most to customers including providing world-class quality drinking water, reducing leakage and tackling the impacts of climate change.

Average bills are still lower than they were four years ago after Hartlepool Water dropped its prices by 7.5% in 2015/16.

Customers with a water meter continue to pay even less, with the average metered bill at £113, or 31p per day for an entire family.

The money to be invested over the next 12 months will include:

*£10million to increase resilience of our Wynyard water treatment works serving customers in Hartlepool and install new filtration equipment to make sure drinking water is tip top quality

* Around £1million maintaining the different water pipes and equipment across Hartlepool

*£4million on running the equipment and operating the network

Kevin Ensell, Hartlepool Water’s, operations manager, said: “Bills are still lower than they were four years ago thanks to the price reductions we promised back then.

"We’re always doing everything we can to be even more efficient at running the business, which translates into value for money for our customers.

"We’re continuing to keep costs low long term while still investing heavily in the things customers care about most.

“Water meters remain the best way to save money and stay in control of your bill, with the annual average metered bill coming in £35 cheaper than those without a meter.

"That’s a lot of money over time, so we’d urge customers to give it a go.

"It’s free to switch to a meter and if you aren’t completely satisfied you can switch back, for free, within two years."

However, water bills paid to Northumbrian Water will see another £12 a year added to their total.

The new charges for its customers for 2017/2018 have been announced today.

Average daily charges for water and waste water services are just over £1 a day, an increase of 3p per day on last year.

The average annual charge for water and waste water services is £390, an increase of £12 per year.

The company says it will continue a multi-million pound programme to invest in maintaining and improving the quality of drinking water and resilience of its pipe network.

More information, including details of charges and support available for those who struggle to pay their bill, is available on the Hartlepool Water website at www.hartlepoolwater.co.uk/charges.

Northumbrian Water customers who are facing difficulty in paying their bills can find more information at www.nwl.co.uk/your-home/your-account/Difficulty-paying.aspx.