Water to your tap

Where water comes from


More than two thirds of our region’s water comes from the Cumbrian reservoirs of Haweswater and Thirlmere in the Lake District, from the Pennines or from Lake Vyrnwy. A quarter comes from rivers, such as the River Dee in Wales, and the rest is sourced from boreholes.



Leaking pipes


Leakage performance varies across the water industry, is dependent on weather and can be affected by the age of the pipes and the type of material the pipes are made from.

Companies aim to strike the best balance between the costs of looking for and repairing the hard to find and minor leaks from pipes against the cost of not fixing these leaks.  The cost of not fixing the leaks takes  into account environmental damage and the cost of developing new water resources to compensate for the water lost through leaks. This approach is called the sustainable economic level of leakage and gives consumers the best value for money.

We achieved our annual leakage target for the thirteenth consecutive year in 2018/19. We always appreciate our customers telling us about any leaks they spot. You can call our leakline number on 0800 33 00 33, or fill in our leak form 

Find out more about the work of our leakbusting teams. 


Treatment and supply


We work around the clock to ensure that homes and businesses have wholesome drinking water on tap.

We have over 80 water treatment works designed specifically to treat the raw water arriving from our catchment, so that the clean water leaving our treatment works meets water quality standards.

You can find out more about how we provide you with clean water


Loss of supply

DecorativeSupply interruptions  

Performance improved again this year and we beat our target for 2018/19. We continue to focus on managing water pressure, investment on poor condition water mains that supply a large

number of customers and have expanding our ‘water on wheels’ fleet which allows us to restore water supplies through tankered water whilst we are repairing damaged mains.

Mains bursts

Mains bursts change wording to: As a result of the extreme weather we experienced during the year there was an increase in the number of mains burst in 2018/19. However, the number of bursts we experience is well below industry average and our longer term performance remains stable.


The amount we use


There are two ways to monitor the amount of water used by customers. One is per capita consumption, this monitors the number of litres used per person, per day (l/hd/d) and the other is per household consumption, which is the number of litres used per household per day (l/prop/d).

In 2018/2019 the average per capita consumption for the North West was 144 l/hd/d, this is slightly more than in previous years, with consumption levels  being influenced by the log hot summer or 2018.

Take a look at helpful tips and advice on how you can save water at home.


Water pressure


The number of customers experiencing pressure problems in 2016/17 was lower in our region than it was in the country as a whole.  However, we failed to meet our tough internal target for the year. We have plans in place to reduce the number of customers experiencing pressure problems.

If you turn on your tap and find that your water is coming out slower than usual or is just a trickle, we've got some simple steps you can take to find out what we can do to help.