Water Watchdog meets in London

The Consumer Council for Water London and South East Committee will be meeting on Wednesday 22 September to question local water companies about the quality of their customer service and the number of complaints each has received over the past financial year.

David Bland, Chair of the Consumer Council for Water London and South East, said: “Nine out of ten customers tell us that they are satisfied with the service provided by their water company, and if something goes wrong we know that customers want the problem to be sorted out quickly.

“Unlike other utilities, water customers do not have the opportunity to switch supplier if they are unhappy with service, but systems are in place to help protect customers and prevent water companies from taking advantage of their monopoly situations. For example, water customers can contact the Consumer Council for Water to raise a complaint about a water company, and we will investigate as necessary. Since we began in October 2005 the Consumer Council for Water has dealt with over 75,000 complaints against water companies and returned over £10 million in direct compensation and rebates for customers.

“At the meeting we will be pushing for improvements where we’ve seen adverse trends in complaints, and questioning water companies on how they plan to make changes to help reduce the number of times their customers need to pick up the phone and make a complaint.”

The Consumer Council for Water London and South East represents customers of Thames Water, Southern Water, Portsmouth Water, South East Water, Sutton and East Surrey Water, Veolia Water Central (formerly Three Valleys Water), and Veolia Water Southeast (formerly Folkestone and Dover Water).

The meeting will take place at 2.00 p.m. on Wednesday 22 September in the Churchill Room of Goodenough College in Mecklenburgh Square, London WC1N 2AB.