The campaign is designed to help customers understand where the water they drink comes from. We want to encourage customers to drink more tap water and we’ve mapped out exactly where customers water comes from, depending on whereabouts in our regions they live.
Alan Brown, Head of Water Quality, said: “People often wonder why their water tastes different to their friends’ or family’s – sometimes even if they live fairly close by.
“This is because each area receives water from different sources across the region, including some well-known beauty spots. Sources can vary from rivers to reservoirs and groundwater.
“We work hard to make sure that our customers get clean, clear and great tasting water straight into their homes, but we also thought it would be useful and interesting to share the journey along the way.”
Examples of where customers’ water comes from include:
Redcar and Saltburn - Water starts its journey in the stunning area of upper Teesdale - home to the impressive High Force. Rainfall collected in open-air reservoirs and water from the River Tees is moved to two water treatment works by a series of pipes and pumps before travelling into customers houses.
Newcastle - People living in areas north of Newcastle, such as Gosforth and Fenham, receive some of their water from the serene reservoir of Kielder, where rainfall is collected under world-famous dark skies.
Chelmsford, Essex - Water comes to our treatment works direct from the River Stour, Kings Lynn and our reservoir at Abberton - an internationally recognised top water body, near Colchester. Abberton Reservoir receives water, collected in the autumn and winter, from several Essex rivers and water transferred 140km from Kings Lynn in Norfolk.
Lowestoft, Suffolk – People living in the Lowestoft and Belton areas receive their water from our Lound treatment works that is directly supplied by the Lound Lakes, which include Fritton Lake. They are located on the border between Norfolk and Suffolk, between Great Yarmouth and Lowestoft. The lakes are a linear series of manmade basins, draining west to the River Waveney at St Olaves. The lakes were historically formed from peat diggings and then later utilised for their water storage.
Helping our customers understand where their water comes from is essential to achieving our ambition to promote confidence in our drinking water so that nine out of ten of our customers choose tap water over bottled water.
We’ve been asking whether customers choose to drink bottled water or tap water in our quarterly domestic tracking surveys since 2019. Our 2020 results were consistent with 2019, with 75% of customers saying they would choose tap water over bottled water, which is good given the pandemic. But we still have some way to go before we achieve our aspiration of 90%.