Ribble Valley Borough Council's website uses cookies to store information on your computer. We use cookies to improve our website and some cookies are essential for parts of the website to work. If you continue to browse ribblevalley.gov.uk we'll assume that you agree to receive cookies used by this site. To find out more about the cookies we use see our cookie notice.

Ribble Valley Borough Council


Private Water Supplies

Private water supplies in Ribble Valley are those that are not provided by United Utilities.

The source of the supply may come from:

  • wells
  • boreholes
  • springs
  • rivers or streams
  • lakes or ponds
  • a private distribution system (mains water which is privately distributed by a second party).

The supply may serve just one property or several properties through a network of pipes.

All private water supplies must be registered with the council, who maintain a Public Register.

Private supplies tend to serve isolated, remote properties or small communities. There are approximately 292 private water supplies in Ribble Valley.

Private supplies must be sampled on a regular basis for a range of contaminants. The frequency of these tests is laid down in the Private Water Supplies Regulations 2009 and varies according to the usage and volume of water.  Please see the Defra guidance on Prviate Water Supplies or the Ribble Valley Guidance on the Private Water Supplies Regulations for further information.

You will usually be notified of the results within seven days for bacteriological tests and within 14 days for chemical tests.

The costs of sampling and analysis are passed on to the person responsible for the supply.

Water sampling fees
Activity/Service Charge
 Risk Assessment
At cost max £500  - approximately £100 (including travel and administration)
 Check Sample
 Audit Sample
 Small Supply Sample
 Follow-up bacteriological  sample

 At cost to a maximum of £100  


Large Supplies:  applies to large domestic supplies of 10m3 per day (or serving 50 or more persons) and private water supplies of any size that are used as part of a commercial or public activity. These require check and audit monitoring a minimum of once a year;

Small Supplies:  applies to domestic supplies which service more than one property but provide less than 10m3 per day. These require small supply monitoring once every five years;

Single Dwelling Supply: are sampled if requested by the householder. 

Private Water Supplies Regulations 2009

The Private Water Supplies Regulations came into force in January 2010 and seek to further safeguard public health by ensuring that private water supplies are wholesome, safe to use for food production and to drink.  The new regulations aim to protect health and they require quality standards similar to those of mains water supply.  they require each supply to undergo a risk assessment.

Risk assessment is a proactive approach identifying potential hazards to human health. The information analysed in the assessment will be recorded in a report specific to your private water supply. It allows action to be taken to manage risks through a multi-barrier approach, involving source protection, treatment of the source water and management of the distribution network to prevent contaminants entering the supply system. the regulations cover all private supplies, although those serving a single dwelling will only be risk assessed and sampled upon request of the owner or occupier.

The council will charge for this work, please refer to the charges table above.


Further information on private water supplies can be obtained from Matthew Riding on 01200 414470.


  1. Customer Services
  2. You are here: Private Water Supplies
  3. Drainage