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Private Water Supply cut by neihbour


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ok this is my first post, hope i'm in the right place,

we purchased a house in 2001 from my wifes uncle, it came with no deeds as they were lost and we knew that we had to wait 12 years before we apply for any, the house came with an indemnity policy and a sellers agreement, they were the only Docs we had. we pay our council tax and we pay our neihbour half his water rates, the Drain is a septic tank in paddock next to house, and water is supplied from the neihbour via private line. when we purchased the house we put a caution on the paddock next door to try to prevent anybody digging up our drainage, the paddock belongs to nobody but was part of this house (we are 2 houses up on top of mountain), in 2004 i was involved in a road traffic accident and had major spinal surgery, while i was in hospital my neihbour entered the paddock and dug up the septic tank, police were called in (did nothing as it was a civil matter), but he did eventually re connect it after a week or so, since then we have not talked, so we could not pay for our water we tried to send him cheques for the water, but they were returned to us through our post box. we contacted welsh water and they said that this house we live in should not have any water at all, we explained the situation, and they said it was not thier problem as it was a private agreement, Now he has totally cut our water off and dug up the main water pipe to us. a local farmer has offerd us to connect to his supply which feeds the sheep trough (mains water), but today we had a lovely letter from the water board threatening us with prosecution if we do connect to it, i am not in work so cannot afford a private line at the cost of £32k or a bore hole at the cost of £18k, also they have now put it in writing that we have been recieveing water illegally since 2001 from them, guys my neihbour (wifes uncle) is 82!! so he gets the age sympathy act, but he is a nasty peice of work, we tried Citizens advice and local solicitors, but we cannot get any help, my son is still in school at the moment and it is him it is affecting the most, we have a tank collecting rain water, but no rain lately :(, any advice would be appreciated, at wits end now

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Hi there, sorry to hear of your difficulties- not very pleasant at all.

 

Not my area of specialism but thought the following might point you in the right direction.

 

The Consumer Council for Water

 

The Consumer Council for Water (CCWater) is an independent organisation which can investigate complaints about the water companies. To contact CCWater, call them on: 0845 039 2837, or visit their website at: http://www.ccwater.org.uk.

 

If CCwater find your complaint to be justified, they will ask your water company to put the matter right. CCWater's office will keep you informed about the progress of the complaint and will write to let you know the outcome.

 

If CCWater can't resolve the complaint, it will refer it to OFWAT. Alternatively, if you aren't happy with the way CCWater has dealt with your complaint, you can complain to OFWAT yourself. OFWAT will only take the matter up if it is satisfied that CCWater hasn't dealt with your complaint properly.

 

Office of Water Services (OFWAT)

 

The Office of Water Services (OFWAT) is the independent watchdog set up by the government to monitor and regulate the activities of the water companies. You can contact OFWAT at:

 

OFWAT

Centre City Tower

7 Hill Street

Birmingham B5 4UA

Tel: 0121 625 1300

Textphone: 0121 625 1422

Website: http://www.ofwat.gov.uk

Email: [email protected]

Any advice given by me is based solely on my experience in claiming, my experience in CAG or my opinion. I have no legal background. I want to encourage others to reclaim what is theirs.

 

Got a DCA breaking OFT guidance. Complain to the OFT about the DCA. Help put an end to these practices-

 

http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/letter-templates/155095-complain-oft-about-unfair.html#post1652270

 

Register with CAG today, its free, its a great community:

http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/register.php

 

[email protected].

 

 

 

Thankyou Kennythecelt:)

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Thank you Kenny, will do that ASAP, since last post, neihbour has threatened to dig up my sewerage pipes now, so will need to go down route of solicitor again me thinks, just cant bloody afford it, thats the problem

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Good luck!

 

I would maybe push the fact you have had a water supply for so long and the obvious need for access to a secure water supply. If you have children, mention them and any medical conditions.

 

How did you pay your neighbour his share of the water rates- any proof of that, any written agreement or witnesses?

Any advice given by me is based solely on my experience in claiming, my experience in CAG or my opinion. I have no legal background. I want to encourage others to reclaim what is theirs.

 

Got a DCA breaking OFT guidance. Complain to the OFT about the DCA. Help put an end to these practices-

 

http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/letter-templates/155095-complain-oft-about-unfair.html#post1652270

 

Register with CAG today, its free, its a great community:

http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/register.php

 

[email protected].

 

 

 

Thankyou Kennythecelt:)

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Not my area of expertise, but my thoughts are twofold:

 

1) Unless there is some written agreement (or covenant on the property) I cant see that there is any legal obligation of the neighbour to provide water to you I'm afraid.

2) The water company are making me laugh. I would be VERY interested in what basis in law they feel that they can prosecute you for this!

 

I dont see an option, especially in the medium to long term, but to connect to the water mains supply - the costs seem excessive though, is that what they have quoted you?

7 years in retail customer service

 

Expertise in letting and rental law for 6 years

 

By trade - I'm an IT engineer working in the housing sector.

 

Please note that any posts made by myself are for information only and should not and must not be taken as correct or factual. If in doubt, consult with a solicitor or other person of equal legal standing.

 

Please click the star if I have helped!!

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all we have with the property is a sellers agreement which is signed by our neighbour, and it states that water will come from No1 (his house), he has not given us any notice of cutting us off, and yes we do have two children allthough one is 20, the other is 16 and still in school, we take him to his Grans 2 miles away every morning to wash/shower, me and my wife can put up with this, but it is really affecting him. the local farmer has offered us to join into his supply and will take no more than half a days warok to do so, but water board have said No and have threatened action against him if we go down that route, apparently there is a welsh water act 1991 that stops anybody joining into a private line, cannot find this act to be honest yet.

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sorry kenny in answer to your question, we paid him in cheques and have proof, also paid cash for repairs to line he carried out, and also have proof of that, this just makes me mad, only 4 weeks ago i repaired the line at my own cost, would not have bothered if i knew this was going to happen.

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Thank you Mr shed for taking the time to veiw this post, in answer to your question, the water mains is 1.5 miles away from my house and current line runs across 2 different farms, the quote the water surveyor has given us is £29433, there is another option of a bore hole, but my situation is i cannot even afford the 9-18k for that, i can have mains water connected within half a day, but water board will not let me connect to the next farmers supply, i cant understand, it would be finacially better for them to set me up on that line, i could be a normal customer and pay water rates like everybody else and so forth.

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ok regarding the above post, here is an update.

letter from Dwr Cymru (welsh water) has arrived, stating that i cannot have water at all unless i put in my own supply, a borehole or a pipe to run 1.5 miles to nearest mains meter, also states that i have been having water illegally for the past eight years, and that this house has never been on the water mains at all, and that they have past my details onto local public health authority as they should be informed.

this morning i recieved a letter from the local public health authority with a questionare, it is mainly asking me where my water comes from and how old are the occupants of this dwelling.

also Water consumer board rang me and clarified the situation, basically they cannot help me as i am not a consumer, but they said i need to see a solicitor about my neighbour as he cannot turn off the water to me without notice even if it is illegal, and to show them that this property had water before 1991 supplied to this house by him (his daughter used to live here before), also like i have said before, i have this in black and white and an easement to a water supply from him. and to make matters worse i was in garden yesterday trying to work out how to get a bigger water tank in, and the cheeky sod shouted over and said "wont be long now before i have the house back!!!!" i'm not gonna swear honest.

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  • 1 month later...

Sorry to hear about your problems. I have had some recent experience with boreholes, having had 2 drilled in the past 5 years. (I had to have the second one done simply because the only place we could build a new house on the land was where the first borehole was sited.)

Which brings me to your figure of 18K to put in a borehole. I thought my first one was pricey at 7K with all the electrics and submersible pump and accumulator tank. The second borehole only took a day to sink 50 metres (they can go deeper but that is the standard depth they drill even if water is only 20m down). We then transferred all of the kit (pump, etc) from one hole to the other and away it went.

I'm sure that we only paid something like £2,500 for the second hole to be bored. Even if you double that for the equipment, that's still less than a third of the price you mention.

I used a company called Teify Valley Water Wells (07817 35049) and I'd definitely advise at least talking to them to get a quote, because it could be an answer to your problems at a much lower price than you have been led to believe. I'm assuming you have power on site to drive the pump.

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Thanks Sir Ben for that, we have had a few quotes since first post, also had a free survey, the nearest we can put a bore hole is in local farmers field, that is where they surveyor picked up water, that is ok but we would have to go down route of solicitors to get things legally drawn up, not a massive problem i know but costly, they cheapest quote we have had is £10,544, that includes everything, but we have to lay the electric cable to pump from our house. we are currently in touch with our local public health officer who is disgusted at what has happened and is now in talks with water board, it has now come to light that the water board told our lovely neighbour to cut the supply to us (i do not believe this personally), so he is following that line at the moment, not all doom and gloom we have rain so our water tanks are filling up, next problem will be frost and frozen tanks and pipes. but we are looking for a good and aggresive solicitor who we can use and who also uses the legal aid system.

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