MP 'furious' at decision to drastically increase water bills in Ashfield

MP Lee Anderson has expressed anger at Severn Trent’s decision to increase water bills in the area.

By Lucy Roberts
Wednesday, 2nd March 2022, 3:04 pm
MP Lee Anderson said he is 'furious' at the rise in water bills.
MP Lee Anderson said he is 'furious' at the rise in water bills.

The MP learned that water bills in Ashfield are set to rise more than in other areas in the country after being contacted by concerned residents.

Mr Anderson immediately contacted the chief executive at Severn Trent to demand answers.

Although Severn Trent has defended the proposed 7.1% price hike by stating the average bill will only increase by 8p a day, the MP says, this is in fact an extra £2.43 a month and will financially stretch residents in the area – far more than people living elsewhere.

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Lee has also written to the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, to ask them what the department thinks of the reasons for the water rate increasing by seven per cent in Ashfield compared to three to four per cent across the rest of the UK.

Mr Anderson said: “I am furious that Ashfield residents are facing this price increase.

“There were several interruptions to water services last year during the hottest days of the year so to increase prices in this way seems unfair. I am meeting Severn Trent shortly and will raise this matter again.”

Severn Trent responded, saying: ‘Our average household bill for the coming year is around £389 which is one of the lowest in England and Wales at around a £1 per day, so for the average bill we are looking at a bill increase of around 8p per day.

‘There are number of reasons why we are seeing an increase in our bills, most notably is the impact of high inflation, that are in part being driven by high energy costs.

‘I know that any price increase can be hard to manage and to help, this year we have deferred £62m of customer service related reward we could have included in our bills.

‘We continue to offer our customers a wide range of schemes to help them manage their bills, from a variety of payment options through to our Big Difference Scheme that is open to all our customers and can offer a reduction of up to 90% on their bill.

‘Many customers bills can be cheaper if they switch to a water meter with details on our website.

‘I hope that I have reassured you that I am absolutely committed to supporting our customers during these difficult times whilst we balance the need to deliver and invest in our services, such as the recent £160k investment we've made to make the water network more resilient across Ashfield.’

The MP will meet with the new Ashfield Severn Trent manager at the end of the month.

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