Our journey continues...

We've been on a long journey with our customers while building our plans for the future.

The people of the West Country have had a lot to say, and we've learned plenty from what they've told us. Using this feedback, we’ve built our plans for 2020-2025… but that’s just the start of the journey.

Affordable bills for all...

As part of our plans, we've committed to lowering the average bill by 5% and keeping them lower than they were in 2015. We will also work to continue to eliminate water poverty with low bills and more access to social tariffs.

So what are we going to do?

Customer excellence

Making sure you get the best possible experience every time you need us, so we can remain the best water company for customer service and aim to be the best utility company.

We will achieve this by:

  • Making it easier for you to find out what you need from us by offering more channels and self–serve options to contact us. This will allow you to find out what you need to know at a time that suits you.
  • Reducing our bills and making sure you understand how we are measuring our performance so you are happy that your money is being well spent.
  • Continuing to be the most trusted utility company.
  • Making sure our colleagues have the knowledge and technology to provide you with great customer care, and ensuring you get the information when you need it.
  • Making improvements to our billing system so we know if you need additional help.
  • Simplifying processes for developers and making sure they get everything they need from our online portal so they can finish their jobs quickly.
  • Meeting developer service standards.
  • Improving the information we give to developers so they know what choices are available to them.

Inclusive services

This means meeting the needs of all customers, especially those who need that extra bit of help, with an aim of reaching up to 8,000 more customers who may benefit from our extra care services.

We will achieve this by:

  • Trebling the number of customers who receive extra care through our Priority Services Register.
  • Carefully sharing data with other utilities to help us identify those who may need extra help.
  • Expanding our innovative partnership with Western Power Distribution to ensure vulnerable customers are recognised across the energy sector.
  • Working with community groups to promote the support we have available.
  • Making sure customers on the register are satisfied with our services and still receiving the support that they need.

Learn about priority services

Affordability for all

We work to keep bills as low as possible while delivering excellent customer service, so that we have no customers in water poverty.

We will achieve this by:

  • Using our range of social tariffs to ensure we have no customers in water poverty.
  • Continuing to work to help reduce bills for those who struggle to pay.
  • Continuing to find and work closely with debt advice partners to provide free advice to our customers.
  • Reviewing the presentation of our bills to make sure they are easy to understand.
  • Working harder to ensure properties with a water supply but registered as empty are genuine, so we can reduce the number of properties not billed to 1.8%.
  • Supporting retailers to bill business properties.
  • Improving the number of people who say we provide value for money to 83%.

Find help to pay your bills

Protecting the environment

We will improve and protect habitats for wildlife and water sources.

We will achieve this by:

  • Working closely with other organisations such as the Environment Agency to ensure you and your local area benefit from our work, particularly through the Water Industry National Environment Programme (WINEP).
  • Setting biodiversity and raw water quality targets to demonstrate that we are protecting the environment for the future.
  • Continuing to increase biodiversity at our sites by actively working to ensure plants and wildlife can thrive.

Improving communities

We want to continue to play our part in your local community by delivering a programme of activities and initiatives, and working with local partners to help deliver our plans. Our stakeholders will decide if we are doing good work in your local area.

We will achieve this by:

  • Improving education and awareness of water issues via school talks and Bristol Water Youth Board initiatives.
  • Playing a greater role in community leadership including through our Water Fountains project, following the success of fountains opened in Millennium Square and Queen Square.
  • Continuing our support for the Bristol Refill campaign.
  • Fostering academic partnerships, such as our water efficiency test site with the University of West of England.
  • Contributing to the Bristol City Mayor and West of England Combined Authority Regional strategies, including the active roadworks initiative.
  • Increasing satisfaction with our community engagement including our support for festivals and community events.
  • Improving our lakes and recreational facilities.
  • Helping to improve wildlife on land where we are carrying out works. Working with Wessex Water to improve our joint billing messages, and environmental impact.
  • Forming an active network to share best practice on resource efficiency with West of England utility companies.

Promoting water efficiency

Working together to ensure we reduce water wastage by installing more meters to help more of us to be water efficient.

We will achieve this by:

  • Promoting water efficiency to encourage a 5% reduction in your everyday water use – from 142 litres per person per day to 135 litres.
  • Increasing the percentage of properties with a meter to 75%.
  • Providing more information to allow you to track and manage your water usage.
  • Continuing our work with the University of the West of England to better understand water usage, and understand worldwide trends to help you reduce your usage.
  • Becoming a local leader and bringing organisations together to address water efficiency, plastic waste and energy efficiency.
  • Supporting scientific and educational projects on water conservation so we become a community leader in this area.

Reducing leakage

Recognising that tackling leakage is one of your key priorities, we are setting tough targets to reduce leakage through a number of methods including replacing more than 60 miles of pipes.

We will achieve this by:

  • Reducing leakage by a further 15% from 43 megalitres per day to 36.5 megalitres, thereby reducing treatment, distribution, and the need to take water from other natural sources.
  • Replacing more than 60 miles of pipes, fixing leaks faster and finding and fixing more of the smaller leaks which are not visible above ground.
  • Investing in new technology to achieve our promises.

Improving water quality

Making sure we provide you with safe, clean water and stop it occasionally looking, smelling or tasting odd by upgrading pipework, improving your environment and working with farmers.

We will achieve this by:

  • Maintaining and upgrading our treatment works so they continue to provide fresh, clean water.
  • Improving water treatment and customer information to reduce calls about water that does not smell right, and replacing pipework which leads to discoloured water.
  • Replacing lead pipes supplying high-risk properties such as preschools and nurseries.
  • Helping local farmers to improve water quality by working with them to help better manage their land and reduce the effects of pesticides used in the countryside.
  • Improving raw water quality and biodiversity across the Mendips.

Reducing supply interruptions

Making sure you always have water running to your tap, and when this doesn’t happen, reducing the amount of time it takes to fix it.

We will achieve this by:

  • Improving the effectiveness of our network by targeting problem pipes and improving our ability to re-route water.
  • Introducing new initiatives to broaden our knowledge, including the use of smart data like pipe sensors to quickly detect issues or trends.
  • Further investing to reduce mains bursts by targeting areas more prone to leakage and interruptions, including the use of innovative projects to improve supplies.
  • Reducing the number of mains bursts by 6%.
  • Continuing to use innovative and new technologies to further reduce supply interruptions.

Boosting protection

Making sure even fewer people face the threat of having no water for more than 24 hours when things go wrong, and not restricting your water supply if we have a drought.

We will achieve this by:

  • Protecting an extra 550,000 customers from supply interruptions lasting more than 24 hours.
  • Managing water resources carefully – the last water restrictions during a drought were in 1991.


Revised April 2019

In September 2018, we published our business plan promising cheaper bills, industry-leading customer service and reduced water leakage. Following an initial review by our regulator, Ofwat, we revised some sections of the evidence for our plan. The changes were in the detail and we are still committed to reducing bills, delivering industry-leading customer service, and reducing leakage.