The Water Industry Act 1991 gives a property developer an absolute right to connect the property to the public sewerage network, unless the sewer constructed does not meet the reasonable standards of the statutory sewerage provider, but when the Welsh Water Authority refused builder Barratt permission to connect to its sewerage network at the point at which Barratt wished, the case ended up in the Supreme Court., Welsh Water refused on the basis that the network lacked sufficient capacity. It suggested connecting at a different point, which would have required Barratt to obtain the consent of another party.
The Supreme Court rejected Welsh Water’s argument. The Act confers no express right on the sewerage undertaker to select the point of connection or to refuse permission to make the connection on the ground that the point proposed by the developer is open to objection.
This decision will come as a relief to developers.