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Our charges

Water Resources application fees 2017 – 2018

Annual abstraction charges are payable in respect of licences issued under the Water Resources Act 1991. Charges are based on licensed abstraction quantities, source, purpose and season, and can be confirmed upon licence issue. 

Please see our latest Abstraction Charging Scheme for full details of the different application fees required for new licences or for amendments to existing licences. The table below is provided as a quick reference tool to summarise the different Water Resources application types and the fees these incur. Application forms submitted without the correct fee will be returned. 

Joint applications:

Where applications for an abstraction licence and an impoundment licence for associated activities are jointly submitted, a single application fee will be charged in accordance with the charges detailed in our Abstraction Charging scheme and below. For example, if an application for an abstraction and impoundment licence to authorise a hydropower scheme with an installed capacity of 30kW were submitted simultaneously, the total application fee would be £750.

Higher application fee of £1,500:

  • Impoundment licences
  • Temporary abstraction licences (a one-off abstraction for any purpose lasting less than 28 consecutive days)
  • Licences to authorise a transfer (of water)

Tiered fees for hydropower schemes based on power output in kilowatts (kW):

  • <25kW £375
  • 25 to 50kW £750
  • 50 to 100kW £1,125
  • >100kW £1,500

Lower application fee of £135:

  • New, varied or renewed abstractions for all other purposes, besides those listed above
  • The cost of a formal application can be confirmed as part of a pre-application enquiry

No application fee for pre-application enquiries:

  • *Pre-application enquiry (all types)
  • Consent to investigate a groundwater source (Section 32 consent)

No application fee for  **administrative/minor variations to licences:

  • Transfer of Licence Holder (evidence of Rights of Access will be required) or change of Licence Holder address
  • Administrative change in contact details (ie for correspondence/billing/annual returns)
  • Apportionment (splitting) of licensed quantities between two or more persons
  • Reduction in licensed quantities 
  • Revocation (cancellation) of a licence


* Section 3.5 of the Charging Scheme states that applicants will be charged £125 for each hour over and above an initial 15 hour period for pre-application advice given or discussions held.

** An administrative/minor variation to a licence does not require consultation prior to issue.

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