Private water supplies

A private water supply is any supply which is not provided by a water undertaker, such as Yorkshire Water or Northumbrian Water. The water may come from a spring, well, borehole, pond, lake, stream or river.

The Private Water Supply Regulations 2016 apply to all private water supplies intended for human consumption. They aim to protect public health and require the same quality standards as the mains water supply. Private supplies are more likely to be contaminated because the sources are more likely to be unprotected from contamination, and they are generally not treated to the same standard as public supplies. The legislation contains details of the criteria used to develop the sampling programme, together with the list of substances and criteria used in relation to sampling.

Advice leaflets

We have compiled some useful information about private water supplies, including boreholes, nitrates, microbiological failures and spring sources:

Training aids

There is more information and training aids to assist you in understanding the regulations on the Drinking Water Inspectorate webpage:

Further guidance on being a 'Relevant Person' regarding private water supplies can be found here:

Risk assessment

We are required to carry out a risk assessment of all private water supplies in the Hambleton area every 5 years. Risk assessments involve looking at the whole private water supply including the source, the area the water is abstracted from and the number of consumers using it. The risk assessment also includes inspection of the water source, storage tanks, water treatment and considers any potential hazards that may exist.

The risk assessment must be carried out by a competent person which is the local authority or someone approved as competent by the local authority. However, to save time and potentially reduce costs, you can collect information about your supply for the risk assessment and provide it to the local authority eg plan of layout of the supply, details of any treatment systems in place etc.

Larger supplies(greater than 10 cubic metres per day) that provide water for commercial activities also require a check and audit sampling to be carried out. The frequency of these checks depends upon the volume of water used on an annual basis.

These are all chargeable services by our team. You can find our private water supply risk assessment rates here:

List of known specialist water engineers and advisors

All works to a private water supply must be carried out by a competent person. A list of water engineers can be found here:

Customer satisfaction survey

In order to improve our private water supply service we want to know what you - our customers - think. We would be grateful if you could take a few moments to complete this survey. Please base your answers on your most recent experience with the service.

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