Scottish Water, born on 1 April

Scottish Water, the new organisation responsible for all the country’s water and sewage services, will commence operations on Monday 1 April.


On Monday, all the functions and assets of the three existing Scottish water authorities will pass to Scottish Water, as part of the Water Industry Act, which received royal assent at the beginning of March this year. The organisation’s new Chairman will be Alan Alexander, current Chairman of West of Scotland Water. The Chief Executive will be Jon Hargreaves, current Chief Executive of East of Scotland Water.

“The creation of Scottish Water is more than just a merger,” said Minister for Environment and Rural Development Ross Finnie. “It will be commercially astute but will very definitely remain directly accountable to Parliament. Efficiency and investment will be at the heart of its operation and it will focus on delivering improved service to all customers at a fair price.”

Customers should be confident in the quality of their tap water, added Finnie. “Let me be clear on this: the quality of Scotland’s drinking water is high and getting higher,” he said. “It has been improving year on year for many years now.” This progress will continue, he said. Scottish Water will be investing over £1.8 billion in the next four years to improve the water and wastewater network, and Finnie stated that he expects that Scottish water will become some of the best in Europe.

The organisation will be the fourth-largest water services provider in the UK, and the 12th largest business in Scotland by turnover. It will operate over 1,600 sewage treatment plants and 440 water treatment plants, and will service over 1,120 reservoirs, 17,580 miles of sewers and over 45,870 miles of water mains.

Scottish Water will also play a key role in the Scottish economy, purchasing 50% of the total contracts in the construction and engineering sector, delivering an investment programme worth around £2 billion between 2002 and 2006.

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