The Jersey Waterworks Company Limited was founded in 1863 and water was first supplied in 1869 from a well at Vicart in St Lawrence. These wells proved unreliable and the Company soon ran into financial difficulties, culminating in administrators being appointed by the Royal Court in 1874 to look after the Company’s affairs until a new company could be formed. This took place in 1882 when The Jersey New Waterworks Company Limited was registered.
The new Company sank several wells in the St Lawrence and St Peter’s Valley areas; but these were later abandoned in favour of surface water supplies. In 1893 it was decided to build the Millbrook Reservoir and three years later it was brought into service. In 1909 Dannemarche Dam was commissioned and the construction of Handois Reservoir in 1932 completed the reservoirs in what is now known as ‘Waterworks Valley’.
In 1921, water chlorination was introduced at the Millbrook treatment works where slow sand filters were used to treat the water and then in 1934 construction began on the Company’s main water treatment works at Handois.
Development work by the Company ceased for the duration of the Second World War due to shortages of materials and concrete. However, once the war was over and materials became available, work continued apace with the building of Le Mourier Stream abstraction station (1945), an extension to Handois water treatment works (1949), construction of Grands Vaux Reservoir (1953) and then the construction of Val de la Mare Reservoir (1960). The latest reservoir to be constructed is Queen’s Valley, which was completed in 1991.
The desalination plant at La Rosière began operation in 1970 and was converted from a sea water distillation plant to a reverse osmosis plant in 1999.
The Company continues in its efforts of upgrading the raw and treated water networks, allowing the transfer of raw water between reservoirs and treatment works and the move, from a pumped system, to a gravity based treated water distribution system. This has resulted in a considerable increase in the ability of the Company to store, treat and distribute a wholesome supply of treated water to its customers.
In November 2004, the Company adopted the trading name of ‘Jersey Water’, to reinforce its identity as a modern provider of wholesome water to the Island community. At this time Jersey Water also launched a comprehensive website, providing customers and the general public with quick and easy access to information about the Company and its services.
The Company was in private ownership up until 1981 when the States of Jersey purchased a majority holding in the Company of approximately 74%.
A Chronological History of the Company
1863 Jersey Waterworks Company Limited formed 1867 Cholera epidemic occurred in St. Helier prior to the Waterworks Company supplying the town 1874 Old company goes bankrupt due to inadequate resources 1874-1882 No piped water supply 1882 The Jersey New Waterworks Company Limited formed 1895 Millbrook Treatment Works and storage reservoir completed (2.25 Ml/d) 1909 Dannemarche Storage Reservoir completed 1921 Chlorination introduced at Millbrook Treatment Works 1924 Westmount Service Reservoir completed (4.5 Ml) 1932 Handois Reservoir completed 1934 Handois Treatment Works built and Company laboratory inaugurated.Chlorination introduced 1940-45 German Occupation of the Island during World War II 1945 Le Mourier stream abstraction station completed 1949 Extension to Handois Water Treatment Works (9 Ml) 1953 Grands Vaux Reservoir completed 1960 Val de la Mare reservoir completed 1961 Handois Treatment Works extended (now 12 Ml/d) 1962 The second Westmount Service Reservoir built (6 Ml) 1965 Augrès Treatment Works commissioned (9 Ml/d) 1970 La Rosière Seawater Distillation Plant commissioned (6Ml/d) 1975-1980 Additional borehole fields sunk along with Pont Marquet stream abstraction 1987 Augrès Treatment Works extended (now 18 Ml/d) 1991 Queen's Valley Reservoir completed (1193 Ml) 1996 Handois Treatment Works refurbished and up-rated (28 Ml/d) 1997 Laying of the trunk main for the Les Platons high level distribution system commenced 1997 Millbrook raw water transfer system commissioned 1997 Millbrook Treatment Works decommissioned 1997 Communication cable commissioned between Millbrook and Handois WTW 1998 Grands Vaux raw water PS refurbished 1999 La Rosière reverse osmosis desalination plant completed (6Ml/d) 1999 Work commenced on the construction of the Les Platons Service Reservoir (9 Ml) 2003 New laboratory at Millbrook, St Lawrence opened 2003 La Hague raw water PS refurbished and automated 2004 Les Platons Service reservoir and high level distribution network commissioned 2004 New Wash Water Recovery Plant commissioned at Handois 2004 Treated water transfer main linking Handois, Augrès and Les Platons is completed and the Les Platons High level distribution system is commissioned 2004 Company adopts the trading name ‘Jersey Water’ and launches information website 2006 Augres WTW – wash water transfer system commissioned, allowing wash water to be treated at the Hadois Wash Water Recovery Plant. Fibre optic communication cable between Augres and Handois WTWs commissioned 2008 Westmount Service Reservoirs, No1. SR internally lined and improvements to the inlet and outlet connections made 2009 25 year Water Resource Management Plan made public 2010 Island-wide compulsory metering commenced 2011 Val de la Mare Reservoir – waterproof membrane installed on the upstream face of the dam 2012 Desalination Plant has new reverse osmosis membranes installed. Jersey Water celebrates its 130th Anniversary since its incorporation in 1882. A 130th Anniversary Fund is launched and 20 local charities benefit from the £130,000 Fund. A book is produced documenting 130 years history of Jersey Water. 2013 ECO-ACTIVE accredition and Investors in People (IIP) silver standard achieved. Ultra violet UV disinfection equipment installed at Handois Treatment Works. 3,700 new water meters install as part of ongoing compulsary metering project. £2,878,000 invested in Capital Programme. First staff engagement survey carried out with a 94% response rate. "Ideas on tap" staff suggestion scheme launched 2014 Management changes announced as Howard Snowden, Managing Director and Engineer, is intending to retire in March 2015 after 23 years of service to the Company. Helier Smith, Finance Director, is being promoted to the new role of Chief Operating Officer. In this role he will be responsible for all operational aspects of the Company allowing Howard time to concentrate on a number of strategic initiatives in his final year with Jersey Water. It is the current intention that Helier will succeed Howard as Managing Director in March 2015. Helier joined the Company in 2002 and qualified as a Chartered Director in 2010.