Northumbrian Water is starting to treat churches as businesses rather than charities and charging churches for the amount of area (i.e. roofs and car parks) that will collect rainwater and discharge it into the sewer network. This could raise most churches’ water bills by hundreds if not thousands of pounds - especially any with extensive roofs and lots of gutters.
The Bishops of Newcastle, Durham, and Hexham and Newcastle have already written to Northumbrian Water and OFWAT and to local MPs about this issue but unfortunately with no effect- Northumbrian Water say that they are acting within the rules and making a change in this area would disadvantage their other customers. There is now an online petition asking the Prime Minister to instruct water companies to change their policy. Please register and pass this email onto anyone else you think will sign it. The petition needs at least 15,000 signatures to be noticed and at present stands at about 4,300 so responses are needed as soon as possible and not later than July 7th. You can register your name on the petition by clicking on the link below: