Southern Water Annual Report 2019-20

Southern Water has published its annual report and accounts for 2019/20 - you can read a summary or the full report on our homepage or by clicking here.

Southern Water provides essential water services to 2.6 million customers, and wastewater services to more than 4.7 million customers across Sussex, Kent, Hampshire and the Isle of Wight

In 2019-20 its services cost customers £1.20 a day – less than an average barista poured cup of coffee

Chief Executive Ian McAulay said: “The past year has been challenging for Southern Water and the water sector more broadly, from a tough financial determination from our regulator Ofwat to supporting our customers and communities through COVID-19.

"I am proud that we have continued to move the organisation forward on a trajectory of transformation and we have achieved a number of significant milestones from a record number of bathing waters rated excellent to an industry leading reduction in customer water usage. However we recognise we need to continue to improve our performance in key areas and we are committed to achieving those advances over the next AMP period.”

Report highlights include;

• Last year 62 of the 83 designated bathing waters around the 700 miles of coastline met the Defra ‘Excellent’ standard. None fell below ‘Acceptable’.
• Our performance over the five-year period in reducing per capita consumption has earned us a reward of £6.9 million – the maximum
• The Consumer Council for Water acknowledged our ‘significant strides’ to improve the level of service offered to our customers. However, we recognise that we still have more work to do.
• Our customers used on average 126.5 litres per person, per day - well below our target of 133.7 litres and significantly lower than the UK average, which is still around 144 litres, this sets a fantastic foundation for Target 100 – our long-term commitment to help our customers reduce consumption to below 100 litres per person, per day.
• To support our customers to become more water efficiency we carried out 28,488 water-saving home visits since 2015
• 86.5% self-reporting of pollutions – our best ever performance
• 16.1% of the energy used to power our operations we generated ourselves.


Last year the company invested £501.8 million on capital projects to improve infrastructure.

In the last financial year Southern Water has reported an operating profit of £212.3 million (£256.4 million in 2019) on turnover of £878 million (£876 million).

The company bolstered its financial position with the issue of £825 million of sustainable bonds in May 2020.

Supporting our customers

We want to continue to increase the number of customers on our range of support schemes and tariffs. We are pleased to report that we have exceeded our target providing tailored financial support to 296,516 (2019: 269,926) customers to date.

We have given more than 5,600 customers payment holidays during COVID-19

For more information contact the southern water media team: [email protected]