Expert Guide

New sewer connections for Property Developers

This guide outlines the key aspects that Property Developers need to bear in mind when allowing for connecting properties to mains drainage.


A guide to new sewer connections

Whether it’s a single dwelling or multiple properties, connecting new developments to utilities can become a time-consuming element of any development project. New sewer connections require a large amount of administration behind the scenes and coordination with third parties before any works can even be scheduled.


Building in likely timeframes for a new sewer connection

New sewer connections are time-consuming and often complex drainage projects because they require the involvement of numerous third parties. These projects involve water companies, local councils and highways departments through to traffic management companies for the required street works. In the instance that a road closure is required, a separate application form is completed, and can typically take around 6 to 12 weeks to be approved. Projects involving pumped drainage to the main sewer will also often involve a requirement for the provision of detailed information from the manufacturer.

Due to the nature of the information required, the application for licenses in respect of the project and the involvement of numerous third parties, it can take approximately six weeks from our team being given the go-ahead to works getting underway. This can be longer for complex projects, or those with unique circumstances. Our team understands that each site is unique, and will be able to advise you on the specific nature of your project.


Applications required for a new sewer connection

New sewer connections can be complicated due to the numerous third parties involved, some of whom require detailed paperwork to be submitted in respect of applications required to undertake the works.

Section 106 from the relevant water company

The key application is a Section 106 from the relevant water company, the purpose of which is to apply for the water company’s permission to connect to the main sewer. This process can vary, depending on the nature of the connection – a connection which relies on gravity is typically quicker to turn around than one which requires pumped drainage to the main sewer. The latter requires the provision of detailed information around exact flow rates, and the specification of the pump station to be used. Our team’s relationships with key manufacturers means that we can quickly and efficiently obtain the necessary information, but it still adds around a week to the application process.

Section 50 from the relevant local authority

This is the next key milestone in a new sewer connection project. This application typically requires:

  • Traffic management plan
  • Confirmation of Section 106
  • The provision of street works supervisor and operative licenses
  • Site plans, grid references and photos

Often, the local authority will require additional information depending on the site, and our team ensures this is information is provided without delay. Typically, this process takes around one to two weeks.

Timings are also crucial here and require careful planning and management. The Section 50 application has to be between specific dates, and the requested dates need to be a minimum of 20 days after the application date. Occasionally, the local authority may dictate the dates to our team – for example, if the works are being carried out near a school, or if there are other road works being carried out in the area at the same time.

Excavator and dumper neatly stored so as not to restict vehicular access to property

What costs should property developers expect in respect of a new sewer connection?

The costs of making applications in respect of a new sewer connection are only a small proportion of the overall project costs. There are many variables which can really affect the overall cost of the connection, such as:

  • How far the properties are from the main sewer and the amount of excavation required
  • How deep the main sewer being connected to is, which dictates whether pipework can rely on gravity or if a pump is required
  • Whether works in the highway are required, which can need traffic management and potentially road closures
  • Any requirements the local water company might have for additional manholes above the point of connection
  • Any easements required in the instance that new pipework needs to cross third-party land

Our team will work to understand all aspects of the project and the site being developed, in order to provide a thorough quotation and specification of works required.


Why use The UK Drainage Professionals for your new sewer connection project?

The UKDP team are the ideal partner to take on your new sewer connection project, whether it’s for a single dwelling or a larger development. Our team has decades of combined experience in managing larger, more complex drainage projects, and we have successfully managed cases involving single dwellings through to e have a dedicated team who handle all aspects of the administration of the projects we manage from start to finish, who are entirely separate to the crews who will carry out any physical works.

It is this professional administration supporting our onsite works crews which have led us to work on behalf of many clients across the UK, including being Principal Contractor for NHBC (The National House Building Council), on behalf of whom we carry out a huge range of investigations and drainage works.

Our team specialises in handling larger more complex drainage projects, and we know that our dedicated administration team is as vital to success as the quality of the crews on site. Our crews carry the necessary street works licenses, and are focused on completing works safely and efficiently, whilst being mindful to minimise the impact of works on site.


What about connecting to other utilities?

Here at UKDP we specialise only in drainage, but we work in partnership with Shannon Pipe Contractors (SPC), who can manage all other connection aspects of your project by offering an end-to-end multi-utility service. Much like us, SPC appreciates the stress and complications involved in managing the administration and third-party liaison associated with utility connections and provide a highly professional and efficient service to developer clients. You can find out more about SPC and get in touch with them here.

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UKDP team in office answering off mains drainage enquiries

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