Self Lay

Traditionally water companies have installed all mains and connected up all service pipes. While developers can still choose to requisition mains and service connections from us, they can also now employ a Self Lay Provider (SLP) to lay and connect certain mains and services. Upon completion of the work, we will then normally “buy” the mains that have been installed by the SLP from the developer.

Benefits of Self Lay

Developers can find self-lay beneficial because:

  • They may be able to employ a single contractor to install the water, gas and electricity infrastructure;
  • It may work out cheaper to self-lay than requisition;
  • and Self-Lay Providers (SLPs) may be able to offer more flexibility in relation to the timing of the required works.

Self-lay or requisition?

If you are trying to decide whether to self-lay or requisition mains, please submit a preliminary mains enquiry and we will provide cost information on both options and let you know which aspects of the required work can be self-laid and which aspects cannot.
Find an accredited SLP

Lloyd’s Register keeps a list of Water Industry Registration Scheme accredited SLPs. There are over 150 accredited contractors nationwide.

For more information, please read the Code of Practice for the Self-Laying of Mains and Services . You should also read our Self-Lay Policy and Developers’ Charter and our company-specific guidance.

Find the various adoption agreements with options based on the financial arrangement between the signatories below.

Information for SLPs

Apply for self-lay

Apply for self-lay mains or services

We ask first that you provide several documents and plans with your application including:

  • A detailed site layout drawing
  • Plans of the proposed drainage layout
  • A drawing showing the developer’s proposed locations for the supply pipes and boundary boxes
  • Site Assessment Report (on pipe choice/site contamination)
  • Title deeds

Check the application form for a comprehensive list of what we require.

Please note that application forms may change from time-to-time. Please re-download the form each time you need to use it and do not rely on saved copies.

In some cases we may already have produced a preliminary mains design for the site.  These designs are often produced based on the information contained on the site layout drawing alone, hence why they need to be revised to take all of the information available about the site into account at the application stage.  In addition they may have been produced some time ago using drawings that have subsequently been superseded.

An application fee will be payable if we have had no previous contact about this site from the developer or someone acting on their behalf.  If the proposals have changed significantly since we were last contacted about the site, or if a significant amount of time has elapsed, then a re-design fee may be payable.

A charge is also payable to cover the cost to Bristol Water of administering self-laid services. For 2020/21 this charge is now £28.70 for the first connection on the site, £20.86 for the first connection of a batch and £15.69 for the remaining connections.

From April 2018 all Developers working with Bristol Water may be contacted by our regulator, Ofwat, to ask for feedback on Bristol Water and the service we provide. If you do not want to be contacted please inform a member of our Development Services or New Supplies team and we will pass that on to Ofwat.


Notification and request forms
Point of Connection Enquiries
Pre-start meeting

Contact us about developments