Yorkshire Water has announced that its new household bills will be the second cheapest in England and Wales and will be used to fund its planned £386m investment over the next 12 months.
As of April 1, water and sewerage bills for Yorkshire Water’s household customers will rise by an average of 2.06 per cent, which is below the rate of inflation. This equates to an annual rise in cost, on average, of £8.
This means the average annual bill for Yorkshire’s household customers will be £373, but the exact amount customers get billed will vary depending on if they are on a meter or not.
The announcement of new bills comes as Yorkshire Water plans to spend £386m this year on improvements as part of its wider £3.8bn investment programme covering 2015 – 2020. This will involve upgrading water treatment works, sewers and pumping stations. Investment will also be made to conserve moorland, protect the environment from flooding, and improve rivers.
Compared to other water and sewerage companies Yorkshire Water has the second cheapest bills in England and Wales, roughly £22 per year cheaper than the national average. The firm has also recently been recognised as having the second best customer service levels in the utilities sector.
Richard Flint, Chief Executive at Yorkshire Water, said: “We do all we can to keep our bills as low as possible whilst still delivering the service our customers want and expect.
Despite the slight increase this year, our water and sewerage bills are still the second cheapest on offer in England and Wales. We’ve also committed £7m to financially help those who need it most with their bills.
The money we receive from customers’ bills is vital to enable us to fund our huge investment programme that will stand at £386m this year. This investment will help us manage and maintain our vast network of water pipes and sewers that the public rely on, whilst continuing to mitigate the impact of weather events such as extreme flooding and storms.”
Flagship schemes Yorkshire Water have planned this year to make water taste even better and improve sewerage services for customers include:
· Leeds – £72m investment at Knostrop waste water treatment works to build a state-of the-art sludge treatment and anaerobic digestion facility. This will create renewable energy to power 55% of the site’s total energy needs.
· Huddersfield – Ongoing £5m scheme to renovate the Grade II listed spillway at Butterley reservoir in Marsden.
· Sheffield – Ongoing work as part of the £24m upgrade at Rivelin water treatment works near Sheffield to enhance drinking water quality for hundreds of thousands of residents in Sheffield.
· Dronfield – £25m upgrade of Dronfield sewage plant near Sheffield to make it a twenty-first century facility incorporating high-tech waste water treatment processes.
· Beverley – £25m investment to completely rebuild and modernise Beverley sewage works to bring it into the twenty-first century.
· Irton – £15m upgrade of Irton water treatment works which supplies drinking water to Scarborough. Large parts of the works will be replaced and new processes, including a pesticide removal plant, will be installed to enable the site to meet the needs of future generations.
· Goole – £3.5m investment at the sewage plumping station to upgrade the screens, which will help to protect the pumps from wet wipes and other unwanted items that arrive through the sewers.
· Fish passes – £6m to open up the region’s rivers to more fish at more than 20 sites across Yorkshire so fish, including salmon, can more easily travel up river to breeding spots.
A previous report by the University of Leeds underlined how Yorkshire Water’s investment will deliver significant economic benefits, with every £1 invested by the company having a ripple effect in the wider Yorkshire economy of almost double that. A supply chain of around 1,000 companies receive work from the water giant.
Yorkshire Water provides financial help to those customers who need it most and last year helped 22,000 financially vulnerable customers with £8 million of help. To find out more about various customer support packages call 0345 1 24 24 24 or visit www.yorkshirewater.com/watersure for more information.
Prices for water bills are controlled by the industry regular Ofwat, which sets limits on bills and approves water companies charges each year.