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WaterVoice North West today welcomed a change of heart by government ...
WaterVoice North West today welcomed a change of heart by government

which will ensure that, for the immediate future, water and sewerage

customers in the North West region will continue to be represented by

their own regional committee and office.

In July it was announced that the committee and office for the North

West (based in Manchester) would merge with those for Yorkshire and

Northumbria (both based in Darlington) and be relocated to York. The

decision was made as part of the transition process that will see

WaterVoice becoming the new independent Consumer Council for Water

(CCW) next year.

However, following representations from WaterVoice North West, and

from local MPs concerned about the implications for their

constituents, this decision has now been reversed. Ministers will

now leave it to the new CCW to consider what changes, if any, it

wishes to make to the regional committee structure following its

formal establishment in October 2005.

Brian Linfield, WaterVoice North West deputy chairman, said: 'We are

delighted by the Government's decision on this matter, which we

believe is good news for the region's water customers. We are also

very grateful for the support which we received from a number of

local MPs who recognised the importance of retaining a strong local

voice for water customers.'

Mr Linfield added: 'WaterVoice North West provides assistance to

thousands of water customers each year and I am pleased to be able to

say it is now 'business as usual'. This decision means that the

organisation is now better placed to build on its existing strengths

as we move to become the new Consumer Council for Water.'

Customers who need advice or assistance with problems relating to the

services they receive from United Utilities can contact WaterVoice

North West at the address below, e-mail them at or contact them through the WaterVoice's

website at


1. WaterVoice provides a strong and independent voice for all

customers of the water and sewerage companies in England and Wales.

2. WaterVoice operates through nine regional committees in England

and a committee for Wales. They represent the interests of customers

in respect of price, service and value for money; they also

investigate complaints from customers about their water company.

3. The ten WaterVoice committee Chairmen form the WaterVoice Council.

The WaterVoice Council and its sub-groups deal with issues at

national and European level.

4. WaterVoice North West is the statutory Ofwat North West Customer

Service Committee, established under the Water Industry Act 1991 and

responsible for representing the interests of customers of United

Utilities. They can be contacted at the following address: WaterVoice

North West, 9th Floor, Bridgewater House, Whitworth Street,

Manchester M1 6LT.

5. The WaterVoice Annual Report 2003-04 and WaterVoice Programme

2003-04 to 2004-05 are available free of charge from the Ofwat

Library, CentreCity Tower, 7 Hill Street, Birmingham B5 4UA on 0121

625 1373; or on the web, at

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