Building near a public sewer
If you’re planning a new development or extending an existing property over or within 3 metres of a public sewer or lateral drain we’ll need to know.
We won’t allow building over or near water mains, sewer rising mains or sewers on a new development or redevelopment site.
Have a look at our Build over guidance notes which sets out our consent criteria.
If you meet the consent criteria please complete our Declaration of works form
If you’re unable to meet the consent criteria please complete our Enquiry to build over/close to public drainage form
If you’re planning a small building project like an extension, garage or garden room on your own land and you application is unsuccessful, you may qualify for our Small build sewer diversion process.
How can we help
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Should I replace my lead pipes?
We would encourage you to consider replacing lead pipes as the newer material of pipework normally medium density polyethylene (MDPE) is more recommended and durable. We’ll replace any lead supply pipe for which we’re responsible free of charge. We’ll need a minimum of...
What is water pressure?
Water pressure is the power that moves water from our main pipes into your pipes and into your home. The pressure of the water in the supply system is created by gravity due to the height of the source of the water, in the below example; a reservoir. (It may be assisted...
How hard is my water?
Most of our area is sourced from moorland rivers and reservoirs and is classed as soft or moderately soft. In East Devon the water comes from deep underground boreholes and this water is classed as slightly or moderately hard. You can read more about Water...
How can I contact you?
You'll find all of our contact information here, which includes our most frequently asked questions, arrange a free call back form and our telephone numbers.
What do I need to do if I’m planning to build an extension or conservatory?
If you are building close to or over a public sewer, you’ll need to complete a Build Over Enquiry application form. You can find more guidance on building near public sewers.
Does my pipework need to meet with any regulations?
Yes, pipework and plumbing must comply with the Water Supply (Water Fittings) Regulations 1999. These are designed to stop contamination of water supplies by preventing back-flow, back-siphonage and interconnections of water from other sources.
Can I arrange to lay my own water mains and make service connection?
Yes, if you are or are employing an accredited self lay organisation, you can undertake this work. You can agree with us to lay your water mains and connections, however you will need to make an application to do so. You’ll find more details within our Self lay...
How much does a new water connection cost?
We’ll provide you with a quote which will be specific to your connection requirements after we’ve completed a site survey. The quote will be made up of: Connection costs (all work, materials required for us to make connection) Traffic management (depending on the...
How do I apply for a new sewer connection?
You can complete our sewer connection application form and return it to us by email, the guidance notes contain more information. You’ll need to arrange for a drain to be laid from your property to our sewer, therefore a connection is only possible if we have a sewer...
Can I build over a public sewer?
Yes, if your extension or proposed building work is over or within 3 metres of a public sewer or lateral drain, you’ll need to let us know. You’ll need to check our guidance notes to ensure you meet the criteria and if so, complete the Declaration of works form online...
Why do I need permission to build over or close to a public sewer?
We need to approve your proposal of works (even if you have already had planning permission granted) as your building could cause damage or prevent access to the sewer. Some conservatories and minor works don’t always need planning and/or building regulation approval,...
What if my extension was built over a private sewer before 1 October 2011?
If the property was built before the transfer of private sewers to us on 1 October 2011, the works are legal as there would have been no need for approval before this date. There's more information here on building over a public sewer after this date.
What does a CON29DW drainage and water search contain?
The Conveyancing 29 Drainage and Water (Con29DW) is designed to identify any liability that you may incur as an owner and uncover problems that may impact on the property value and lead to expensive maintenance bills. The search contains: An analysis of the risk of...
What public health and environment services do you provide?
Our Laboratory analyses environmental and recreational samples to support businesses in meeting regulatory and public health requirements.
What kind of laboratory tests and services do you carry out?
Our laboratory carries out a wide range of chemical and microbiological tests. We analyse environmental and recreational samples to support business’ meet their regulatory and public health requirements. If you’d like to make an analytical enquiry you can use our online...
Can you test our trade effluent?
Yes. Our laboratory offers an independent analytical service for trade effluents. If you’d like to make an analytical enquiry you can use our online form