Types of water supply licence

Prospective licensees can apply for either of the following:

  • retail licence
  • combined licence

Retail licences

A retail licence authorises the holder to use an appointed water company’s supply system to supply water to its customers’ premises (‘the retail authorisation’). If you have a retail licence you can buy a wholesale supply of water from an appointed water company and sell it to customers at eligible premises. You need an access agreementwith a particular appointed water company to buy water from it.

Combined licences

A combined licence gives the holder the ‘supplementary authorisation’ in addition to the retail authorisation. It allows the holder to introduce water into an appointed water company’s supply system and sell it to customers at eligible premises. You need an access agreement with a particular appointed water company to introduce water into its system.

Standard licence conditions

The Standard Conditions of Water Supply Licences were determined on 7 November 2005 by the Secretary of State under section 17H(1) of the Water Industry Act 1991.