Drinking water quality | South Norfolk Council
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Drinking water quality

Most properties within South Norfolk receive their drinking water from a water company (mains supply), but some depend on private water supplies that may come from a variety of sources including wells, boreholes and streams.

The Government’s Drinking Water Inspectorate (DWI) assesses the quality of drinking water supplied by water companies in England and Wales. They ensure that the water authorities take appropriate action when any water is unfit for human consumption.

Mains water is supplied by the local water authority. The two major water authorities in the area are Anglian Water and Essex and Suffolk Water.

If you have any queries relating to mains water, you should contact your water authority. If the matter is not resolved to your satisfaction then you can contact the Consumer Council for Water, who is the industry watchdog.

A private water supply (PWS) is any supply that is not provided by a water company. The source of the supply may be a well, borehole, spring, stream, river, lake or pond. 

The supply may serve just one property or several through a network of pipes.

New regulations relating to drinking water supplied from wells, boreholes and other private water supplies, came into force on 27 June 2016. These were amended by a subsequent amendment Regulation known as the Private Water Supplies (England) (Amendment) Regulations 2018 and these came into force on 11th July 2018.

The regulations require local authorities to routinely sample supplies, to investigate failures of microbiological or chemical parameters and to conduct risk assessments.

If your property is served by a private water supply, we recommend that you have your supply serviced regularly, by a qualified water engineer.

New Supplies

A private water supply must not be brought into use or used until the local authority is satisfied that the supply does not constitute a potential danger to human health.

Single Domestic Properties on a Private Supply

If your well or borehole serves only one property, you will be classed as a 'single domestic property' and therefore are not required to have routine sampling by us under the new regulations. However, you can contact us to request that we visit to risk assess or sample the supply.

We also recommend that you have your supply serviced regularly, by a qualified water engineer.