Cheddar Reservoir Two
A new source of water for Somerset
Welcome to Bristol Water's Cheddar Reservoir Two website, providing you with all the most up to date information on our plans for a new reservoir.
Cheddar reservoir

Plans for a New Reservoir in Cheddar

In order to meet the future need for water, we want to build a second reservoir locally, called Cheddar Reservoir Two.

Indicative aerial image of proposed new site to the south of existing reservoir

Having undertaken initial investigations, we designed a scheme and developed a planning application that was submitted to Sedgemoor District Council in December 2013.

We understand the importance of this scheme in relation to the local community and environment. From the start, we have been fully committed to working with local residents and key stakeholders to deliver the best possible scheme for the local area as set out in our ‘Vision Statement’. A key part of the planning process was an extensive consultation with the community that helped shape the plans before they were finalised.

The application has been submitted to Sedgemoor District Council. All the documents are available to view on the Council website: The application number is 17/13/0080.

Cheddar Reservoir Two Flythrough

To see Bristol Water’s Vision for Cheddar Reservoir Two please click here.

To find out more about the existing Cheddar Reservoir and its history click here.

About Bristol Water

Bristol Water supplies more than a million people with water in a 2,400 square kilometre area stretching from Tetbury in the north, to Burnham in the south and east to Wells and Shepton.

It maintains 6,650km of local water mains and operates 16 treatment works to provide water of the highest standard, which is stored in 140 covered reservoirs.

To find out more about Bristol Water click here.


Latest News

Ofwat price review determination

The water industry regulator, Ofwat, has  announced its Final Determinations for all water companies’ business plans for the next five years, from 2015 to 2020,

Ofwat has raised the allowed level of total wholesale expenditure for Bristol Water to £409m from its Draft Determination level of £358.9m; the average household bill will fall to £164 in the first year followed by four years of £152. (1)

This means that the reduction in the average household bill will be much greater than we proposed in our Business Plan and the levels of expenditure and investment allowed to improve and protect customers’ water supplies will be much lower.

We will now carefully study Ofwat’s Final Determination, analysing the detail in full before deciding whether it is in the best interests of our customers and stakeholders to accept the regulator’s determination.

Throughout this process we have engaged fully with Ofwat and we have consulted our customers to ensure that their views and priorities have shaped our Business Plan. We are very confident that our proposals for 2015-2020, combining service improvements and price reductions, meet our customers’ requirements and expectations.  Households and businesses have told us (2) they support our proposals, with 92% of households surveyed indicating that our proposals were acceptable or very acceptable.(3)

We will therefore have to consider carefully whether Ofwat’s Final Determination will allow us sufficient expenditure to maintain levels of service and sufficient investment to deliver the enhancements needed to improve and protect the water supply for our customers.

Companies have until February 12th (two calendar months from the final determination) to decide whether to accept Ofwat’s Final Determination or to ask Ofwat to refer it to the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA).

Cheddar Reservoir Two 

Ofwat announced in its Final Determination that it has not allowed the funding that we proposed to start the initial construction phase of Cheddar Reservoir Two in 2015-2020. We explained in our Business Plan proposals and in our Water Resources Management Plan why Cheddar Reservoir Two is the most economic and environmentally sound solution to meet future demand for water. Ofwat has accepted that more water resources are required in our supply area from 2030 due to population growth and additional commercial activity, but it has decided not to allow any funding in the period to 2020. This delay may, however, result in additional cost and impact upon our ability to meet future demand for water.


Ofwat’s Final Determination set the allowed levels of total expenditure for each company, including the levels of investment they can make to improve and protect water supplies. They also set the price controls which apply to companies’ retail and wholesale activities and which determine the level of customers’ bills over the period.

Bristol Water’s business plan for 2015 to 2020 was originally submitted to the regulator in December 2013 and revised in June 2014. These proposals would have meant reduced customer bills (-1% in December and -2% in June) and investment of £334m to improve and protect customers’ water supplies for the future. We would have also delivered substantial efficiency savings over the period.

Ofwat published its Draft Determination for Bristol Water in August. Total wholesale expenditure was set by Ofwat at £358.9m, compared to £562m in our Business Plan proposals, and this would have resulted in a significant reduction in customers’ bills.

In response to Ofwat’s Draft Determination, we further revised our proposals, reducing our planned wholesale expenditure to £541m; reducing the average household bill by 4.5%, or £9 in real terms, to £188; and delivering even greater efficiency savings.

The new price limits for companies become effective in April 2015. If there are any referrals to the CMA, prices for those companies would then be re-adjusted from 2016 onwards to reflect any changes decided by the CMA.

For full details on Bristol Waters Business Plan….click here.

Editor’s notes 

Bristol Water supplies water to approximately 1.2 million people and businesses in an area of almost 2,400 square kilometres centred on Bristol.  Our area of supply ranges from Thornbury and Tetbury in the north to Street and Glastonbury in the south, from Weston-super-Mare in the west to Frome in the east.

For further information on this release contact:

(1) (Ofwat table A5.9 Final price control determination notice: company-specific appendix – Bristol Water)

(2) Acceptability research phase 2, Blue Marble Research – Oct 2013; sample of 519 households and 29 business customers.

(3) 92% of households considered the proposed package, delivering specific levels of service including improvements in prioritised areas and inflation-only price rises to be acceptable (of which 46% found it to be very acceptable).  Additionally, 28 out of the 29 businesses surveyed considered the plan acceptable (of which 6 found it to be very acceptable).


A key part of the planning process will be to consult fully with the community to help shape the plans before they are finalised.