Families face water bill risesNews follows British Gas bill hike misery

01 August 2008

Water running from tap

Families are facing rising water bills - just after millions of British Gas customers were hit with record increases in gas bills.

Northumbrian Water and Essex & Suffolk Water have announced that customers would face price hikes averaging 1.3% above inflation.

The announcement comes after British Gas revealed on Wednesday a 35% jump in gas prices and a 9% rise in electricity prices.

Northumbrian Water

Critics condemned the move by British Gas for coming at a time when millions of households are already struggling to cope with spiralling fuel bills.

Northumbrian Water said that between 2010 and 2015 it would be investing £1.3bn in its business - an increase of 22% on the amount invested in the previous five years.

The company, which has submitted the plan to water regulator Ofwat for approval, said the investment was needed in its network as high and volatile energy prices continued to affect operating profits.

Essex & Suffolk Water

In the North East there are plans to reduce sewer flooding while Essex & Suffolk Water plans to raise the level of the Abberton reservoir, near Colchester, to meet drinking water demand.

John Cuthbert, managing director of County Durham-based Northumbrian Water, said: 'Our proposals provide important benefits for customers.

'We are able to announce plans for a significant increase in investment with modest price rises that, we believe, most customers will continue to find both affordable and excellent value for money.'

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