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  • FIRST POST
    • Duko
    • By Duko 7th Mar 18, 5:43 PM
    • 5Posts
    • 0Thanks
    Duko
    Southern water rip off?
    • #1
    • 7th Mar 18, 5:43 PM
    Southern water rip off? 7th Mar 18 at 5:43 PM
    Hi

    I need to lower a manhole in our front garden by a bricks depth to allow for a parking space to be created and after being passed around nearly every department at Southern water when enquiring whether I need permission, the answer I was given was that I need to fill in an S185 form for them to consider giving permission, which costs a staggering £340 quid! I would then need to pay someone to actually do the work... Seems excessive to me!

    Reading through the description of the S185 form it seems to apply to developers looking to move manholes or alter the structure of them in a major way. I don't feel it would take much consideration from them to decide that my plans are ok.

    Can I challenge the fee somehow or does anyone know what the implications are of not bothering with seeking permission? Every member of Southern water I spoke to initially assumed I wouldnt need permission, so I'm wondering if they've just found a form that almost fits..

    Thanks!
Page 1
    • Aylesbury Duck
    • By Aylesbury Duck 7th Mar 18, 6:08 PM
    • 2,006 Posts
    • 2,642 Thanks
    Aylesbury Duck
    • #2
    • 7th Mar 18, 6:08 PM
    • #2
    • 7th Mar 18, 6:08 PM
    Hi

    I need to lower a manhole in our front garden by a bricks depth to allow for a parking space to be created and after being passed around nearly every department at Southern water when enquiring whether I need permission, the answer I was given was that I need to fill in an S185 form for them to consider giving permission, which costs a staggering £340 quid! I would then need to pay someone to actually do the work... Seems excessive to me!

    Reading through the description of the S185 form it seems to apply to developers looking to move manholes or alter the structure of them in a major way. I don't feel it would take much consideration from them to decide that my plans are ok.

    Can I challenge the fee somehow or does anyone know what the implications are of not bothering with seeking permission? Every member of Southern water I spoke to initially assumed I wouldnt need permission, so I'm wondering if they've just found a form that almost fits..

    Thanks!
    Originally posted by Duko
    If it is their property I would certainly get their permission. I am sure you would prefer them to seek your permission if they wanted to carry out amendments to your property to make their work easier?

    Challenge the fee by asking for a breakdown, but ultimately this is an ad hoc piece of work you are asking them to do for your convenience so they are entitled to charge what they think is reasonable for it to be profitable.
    Please forgive the deliberate omission of apostrophes on some posts whilst I await MSE to do something about the daft codes that appear in their place when typing on certain devices.
    • Duko
    • By Duko 7th Mar 18, 6:55 PM
    • 5 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    Duko
    • #3
    • 7th Mar 18, 6:55 PM
    • #3
    • 7th Mar 18, 6:55 PM
    It's in the flowerbed of my property, not in the street, so arguably not their property. I'm not asking them to do the work, only allow me to pay someone to do a minor adjustment. It would cost less to do the actual work than getting the permission would.

    If I had some confidence that I'm being told the correct information it wouldn't be so bad, but it feels like I would be putting my money down a manhole....
    • EssexExile
    • By EssexExile 7th Mar 18, 8:12 PM
    • 2,886 Posts
    • 2,007 Thanks
    EssexExile
    • #4
    • 7th Mar 18, 8:12 PM
    • #4
    • 7th Mar 18, 8:12 PM
    If it's your drain on your property serving only your property I don't see what it has to do with Southern Water.

    https://www.stwater.co.uk/help-and-contact/faqs/who-is-responsible-for-the-sewer-drain-on-my-property/
    Tall, dark & handsome. Well two out of three ain't bad.
    • Duko
    • By Duko 7th Mar 18, 8:23 PM
    • 5 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    Duko
    • #5
    • 7th Mar 18, 8:23 PM
    • #5
    • 7th Mar 18, 8:23 PM
    Thanks. It's not exactly clear in the form description;

    Section 185 of The Water Industry Act 1991 places a duty on a statutory undertaker such as Southern Water to alter or relocate any of its apparatus upon receipt of a notice to do so from any person with an interest in land upon which, under which or adjacent to which the public apparatus is installed, providing that the alteration or relocation of the apparatus is necessary to enable that person to carry out a proposed improvement of the land in which he has an interest and that it is reasonable to do so. No such duty arises where the apparatus is located in, under or over any street.

    It then talks about a meeting being held to discuss the relocation of the sewer (which I'm not doing), so I can't help but think this form doesn't relate to my situation...
    • EmmyLou30
    • By EmmyLou30 8th Mar 18, 1:40 PM
    • 415 Posts
    • 514 Thanks
    EmmyLou30
    • #6
    • 8th Mar 18, 1:40 PM
    • #6
    • 8th Mar 18, 1:40 PM
    It's on your property? Just get the work done. The drive contractor will be changing the drain cover out for a new one anyway that they'll make blend in with the drive (if they plan on paving around it then look for a better more proffesional contractor!) and you don't notify the water company for work like that. I would say an adjustment in height is a relatively simple process much the same as changing the cover is and the water company will have no interest in it.

    We lowered an inspection chamber cover in the back garden for our new patio as the developers 20 years ago left it 10" or more above ground! So they simply chopped it down and put a new cover on it so it blends in as well as it can with the new patio. Same with manhole covers in our drive, new covers inlaid with blocks were put down to hide them as best you can.
    • Duko
    • By Duko 8th Mar 18, 1:49 PM
    • 5 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    Duko
    • #7
    • 8th Mar 18, 1:49 PM
    • #7
    • 8th Mar 18, 1:49 PM
    That's great, thank you. That's as I would have suspected, but I didn't want it to bite us in the behind later on so wanted to check with the relevant companies. Seems they just found a way to make a few quid out of my query.
    • Ganga
    • By Ganga 8th Mar 18, 7:47 PM
    • 1,118 Posts
    • 572 Thanks
    Ganga
    • #8
    • 8th Mar 18, 7:47 PM
    • #8
    • 8th Mar 18, 7:47 PM
    That's great, thank you. That's as I would have suspected, but I didn't want it to bite us in the behind later on so wanted to check with the relevant companies. Seems they just found a way to make a few quid out of my query.
    Originally posted by Duko
    Should that not read - Nearly found a way to make a few quid
    ITS NOT EASY TO GET EVERYTHING WRONG ,I HAVE TO WORK HARD TO DO IT!
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