Leader: Flush out sewer charges

Published: 24 Jun 2011 09:300 comments

THAMES Water's plans to make bill payers across Reading and Berkshire pick up the tab for London's sewer problems have created a bit of a stink.

The company justifies the increase by saying we've never had it so good and pointing to sewage improvements in the far west of the Royal county, which is like comparing price tags at Harrods to those at a 99p store.

Thames Water also points to London's affluence as the reason for our relatively low bills, ignoring Reading's own economic power, hard graft and years of welcoming businesses fleeing the capital's soaring costs.

But we must not forget that however public spirited Thames Water might appear, it is a fact that the interests of the company's shareholders will always be paramount, as those who fought so hard to prevent homes swallowing up the Bath Road reservoir site will testify.

London did not treble in size overnight. The Victorians lived many moons ago, and in pre-privatisation days Londoners would have paid for their own sewer improvements; or gone without.

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