Adur and Worthing Councils – Who is responsible for your drains?

When it comes to drains most people don’t actually know the “ins and outs” of what they are responsible for and what the council looks after. On top of that most people don’t know the difference between a drain or a sewer as far as a legal definition goes. For people who live in Worthing or the local area under Adur District Council we thought we would help clarify a few points!

What is a Drain?

According to Adur and Worthing Council the following definitions are used for sewers and drains

  • Drain – A drainage pipe that is serving a single property.
  • Sewer – A drainage pipe that is serving multiple properties.
  • Public Sewer – A sewer that has been adopted by the sewerage undertaker which in this case is Southern Water.
  • Private Sewer – A sewer pipe that is owned by all the homeowners that is serves.
  • Lateral Drain – A drainage pipe that serves one property but that sits outside the boundary of that single property.

What Does This All Mean?

Well basically if the pipe coming out of your home is on your property then it is your responsibility to look after it, keep it flowing and get any blocked drain issues sorted. This means what you put down the drain in your kitchen, toilets and bathrooms is down to you and if your drain blocks on your property then you need to give us a call.

However, a drain that serves your property in Worthing or the local area but that is outside your property boundary is actually down to Southern Water. That being said, this shouldn’t be a signal to put bad things down your sink because nearly all blockages that occur happen very close to the property and this means it’s your responsibility.

Southern Water – Responsibilities

Southern Water is responsible for the following:

  • Any drain that serves a property that is not within the property boundary of the owner.
  • A drain that serves a property that lies on another persons land.
  • A private sewer that serves more than one property.
  • Drains that serve blocks of flats, commercial buildings and the like.

Any unusual situations that include some of the above but have other factors should be discussed directly with Southern Water but our friendly team have a lot of experience so would be happy to help solved the issue.

Here are two useful pages to visit about how to treat your drains properly to avoid blockages:

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