Water bills to rise 4.6%

The regulator Ofwat has announced the water and sewerage prices for 2011/12 which will see bills in England and Wales rise by 4.6%.

The average bill will rise by about £16 to an average annual cost of £356.

Ofwat says this is around 10% lower than the figure companies requested and roughly in line with inflation.

Welsh Water will see some of the lowest combined water and sewerage bill rises of £11 and South West some of the highest rises at £25.

Ofwat chief executive Officer, Regina Finn, said: "People can shop around for the best deal on many things, but not water. Our job is to do this for them.

"No one wants to see bills increasing, particular in tough economic times. When we set limits on prices, we listened to customers and challenged companies hard. That's why average bills are set to remain broadly in line with inflation up until 2015."

£22 billion will be invested by water companies with ten million people's water supplies being improved.

Work will be carried out to improve water safety and supply reliability, protection against flooding and improvement of water quality in wetlands and bathing waters. Alison Brown



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