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Pipework responsibility

Water supply

Homeowners are responsible for:

If the route of your supply pipe is unknown please contact us for advice on location and responsibility.

Our leakage code of practice explains how we help customers with leakage in their supply pipes. A version for business customers is also available.

If you have a leak on your external service pipe we may be able to repair it under our free leak repair service.

Pipe Diagram
  • a = Water main - our responsibility
  • b = External stop tap - our responsibility
  • c = Service pipe - your responsibility
  • d = Internal stop tap - your responsibility
  • e = Internal pipework – your responsibility.


We are now responsible for many sewers and drains which were previously privately owned.

The main aim of this change was to remove private ownership of pipework which was either shared or outside a property boundary.

You are still responsible for the length of drain that takes sewage within and away from your property up to the boundary or to where it joins with pipework from another property.

You are also responsible for:

  • pipes connected to private treatment systems such as septic tanks, soakaways and private treatment works
  • other systems which do not connect to the public sewer such as surface water pipes which discharge directly to a watercourse
  • internal drainage pipes or above ground pipework (such as guttering or vent stacks)
  • drainage systems that are within the boundaries of a single, centrally managed site, for example, a shopping centre, block of flats, hospital, caravan park or industrial estate.

The diagrams below show the situation from 1 October 2011. The pipework shown in red is our responsibility.

Pipework responsibility - sewage


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