Welsh Water

Welsh Water

Welsh Water announces £34m extra funding

Welsh Water is to undergo a major £34m investment drive to help customers struggling with bills, restore reservoirs and improve its services.

Dŵr Cymru Welsh Water, the only not-for-profit water company in England and Wales, said it had consulted more than 12,000 of its customers on where to spend an extra £34m.

The group reported an underlying loss of £36m for the past year taking into account higher interest rate costs and increased investment in its infrastructure.

Average bills remained below inflation for the eighth year in a row, while its operating costs increased by £16m to £313m because of higher business rates and contractor costs.

The consultation showed support for community projects, funding for social tariffs and keeping bills as low as possible.

Chairman Alastair Lyons said: “As a company that exists solely to serve our customers we try constantly to drive improvements in the service we provide in order to meet customers’ expectations by delivering the best possible service at the best possible value.

“Our not-for-shareholder ownership model enables us to reinvest the profit we make into the business focused exclusively on what is in the best interest of customers.

“Derived from a strong performance over the year, it is pleasing to see the dividend our model is delivering for our customers rather than being paid away to shareholders.”

The company has also published its financial results for the year, confirming £350m capital investment for the year out of a total of £1.7bn between 2015 and 2020.

Over the next year, £5m will be spent to support the lowest-earning households by charging them lower bills.

A further £10m will be made available for major replacement of ageing parts of the drinking water pipe network.

More than £5m will be invested in its visitor centres and recreational facilities.

And £3.5m extra will be invested in reducing the 2,000 blockages a month in the sewer network.