Fylde MP slams ‘disgraceful’ water compensation figure

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FYLDE MP Mark Menzies has hit out at the figure announced to compensate consumers who have been without clean drinking water for the last month.

United Utilities has revealed it is to give £50 or £60 to each affected household, depending on the length of time they have been without normal supply.

Following the announcement, Mr Menzies said: “I think the figure of £50 or £60 is woefully inadequate and in no way reflects the inconvenience people have been put through over the last month without drinking water.

“I am disappointed because when I met with United Utilities last week they said they were consulting on how much they should be giving consumers and were unable to even speculate on the figure.

“I urged them to be generous in their estimates as a goodwill gesture to their customers and now they are announcing this as a fait accompli. Despite assuring us MPs would be kept completely in the loop, we were only informed of this via email 25 minutes before it was announced.

“Many areas in Fylde are still without wholesome drinking water and have been extremely understanding, but for a company that made almost £700m in profit last year to offer this paltry sum is a disgrace.”

It is now four weeks since a boiled water notice covering 300,000 homes in Lancashire was put in place after traces of the microbial parasite cryptosporidium were found at Franklaw water treatment works in Catterall, near Garstang.

Since then, Mr Menzies has been in daily contact with United Utilities and the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (DEFRA) and has asked for a full investigation to be carried out into the cause of the problem and efforts to rectify it.

Last Thursday he visited United Utilities’ headquarters in Warrington to meet senior executives and ensure that everything possible is being done to restore clean water.

While some Fylde properties have now been given the all-clear, many remain under the boiled water notice.

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