We have today published details of our customer charges for 2019/20. These are available on its website at www.bristolwater.co.uk/charges-in-detail The published charges show an increase in the average annual bill paid by household customers of 3.6%, to £189, in line with the industry average, as shown at www.discoverwater.co.uk/annual-bill.
Despite these latest increases, our charges are still 8% lower than they were in 2014/15. The bill increases are mainly due to the increase in RPI inflation, which was 3.2% in November 2018. During the year we have seen significant cost reductions, whilst delivering improvements in service levels, particularly on the number of contacts received about water colour and quality. We have also replaced 16 km of mains during 2017/18, in addition to completion of our ‘Southern Resilience Scheme’ to provide additional resilience to our network. The charges for 2019/20 include a voluntary early bill reduction of around £2, as our leakage performance for 2015/16 to 2017/18 was above the target level. The average bill calculation takes into account the impact of customers switching from unmetered to metered charges, which normally results in a lower bill. Customers wishing to switch to metered charges should call us on 0845 6003600 or visit www.bristolwater.co.uk/meterrequest. For customers that don’t switch, the annual bill change will be around 4.5%. No customer will see a bill increase of more than 5%, unless caused by a change in their water consumption.
We recognise that any increase in charges can be difficult for customers, and we offer a number of schemes to support those who may have affordability issues. More details of these can be found at www.bristolwater.co.uk/struggling-to-pay. We also offer advice on how customers can reduce their water usage, and a range of free water-saving products that customers can use to help reduce their bills.