The food team checks various water supplies to ensure they are safe to drink.
Private water supplies e.g. water derived from boreholes, springs and surface waters used for human consumption, commercial activity and/ or in public buildings. Private water supplies are owned and maintained by the land owner and not the mains water undertakers e.g. Yorkshire Water.
Recreational lakes used for swimming or water sports (sampling conducted upon request only)
Mains water used within specific food production premises (sampling conducted upon request only)
The Private Water Supplies (England) Regulations 2016 as amended
There are 4 types of supply that fall under the scope of the regulations:
- Regulation 9 supplies: Large supplies(that use more than 10³ of water a day) and supplies as part of a commercial or public activity (e.g. provide water to schools, hospitals, pubs, hotels etc.).
- Regulation 10 supplies: Small suppliesthat serve two or more domestic properties but have a daily volume of water under 10³.
- Regulation 8 supplies: Distribution networkswhereby public supply water is distributed privately to third parties via a water company
- Single supplieswhich serve just one domestic dwelling.
The regulations place a duty on local authorities to carry out a risk assessment for every private water supply in its area and review and update the risk assessment every 5 years or earlier if necessary. Supplies that just serve one domestic property are exempt from monitoring and the risk assessments and sampling/analysis will only be conducted following a request from the owner of the supply. The purpose of the risk assessment is to ensure that the water is safe to drink at all times and that the supply poses no actual or potential danger to human health.
Local Authorities must also sample the private water supplies, at specified frequencies to determine compliance with the standards specified in the Regulations.
- For large and/or commercial supplies, the volume of water used (including how it is used) dictates the sampling frequency but they have to be sampled at least once a year as a minimum.
- Small supplies have to be sampled every 5 years.
- Single supplies are exempt. However the local authority will sample them should the owner request it.
If a supply is found to be unwholesome, the local authority will inform the owners of the failure and request that remedial action is taken. If remedial action is not taken (or within 28 days of the failure) , the Council can serve notice on the relevant person under Section 80 of the Water Industry Act outlining the work required to ensure the supply is wholesome again.
If a supply is found to pose a danger to human health, a notice under Regulation 18 will be served. This notice prohibits or restricts the use of the supply. The notice would remain in force until the corrective action has been completed to the satisfaction of the Council. This includes satisfactory sample results. If the supply owner fails to comply with the notice, the Council may undertake Works in Default to ensure the supply is compliant with the Regulations.
If a supply has be newly installed or if it has been out of use for 12 months or more, a risk assessment and sampling must be conducted before the water is used to ensure it does not constitute a potential danger to public health.
The Drinking Water Inspectorate recommend that charges reflect officers time and travelling expenses. To that end, Doncaster Council has set the following charges as being appropriate.
Sampling visit - costs for analysis of samples to be recharged in addition to the sample fee and will vary according to the sort of analysis required, prices available on request
Hourly Rate x Time Taken (minimum £50 charge)
Carrying out an investigation (e.g. in the event of a parameter failure)
Hourly Rate x Time Taken
Granting an authorisation
Hourly Rate x Time Taken
Private Water Regulations
For further guidance on private waters, please consult the Drinking Water Inspectorates (national body for ensuring water quality) website:
For more information please contact us:
- email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- tel: 01302 737573
- post: Doncaster Council, Civic Office, Waterdale, Doncaster, DN1 3BU
- DWI Leaflet
- Download (127KB - PDF)