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Ensuring every UK household has a water butt!

Posted by Garden Tech, on June 25, 2024.

As a leading supplier of both decorative water butts, design water butts and traditional water barrels in the UK, our goal is to ensure that every household in the country is equipped with a water butt following the guidance of our friends at GRAF UK (Garantia UK).

Collecting rainwater is a practical, eco-friendly way to conserve water and reduce utility bills. Looking at how other countries manage rainwater collection can provide valuable insights. Let’s explore the French rules on using rainwater collectors and see what lessons we can apply to the UK.

The UK should adopt the French regulations on rainwater collection

Rainwater collection is becoming increasingly popular in France, with clear regulations to ensure safe and efficient use. Here’s what you need to know if you are considering using rainwater collectors:

Legal and practical use of collected rainwater

In France, it is perfectly legal to collect and use rainwater on your property, even during water restrictions. You can purchase rainwater collectors from most DIY stores, and some local authorities even offer financial incentives to help with the cost.

Collected rainwater can be used for:

  • Watering gardens and vegetable patches
  • Washing cars and pathways
  • Washing clothes (with a water treatment device)

However, it cannot be used for drinking or food preparation due to the potential presence of harmful bacteria and chemicals.

Over in France…

Collecting rainwater

Rainwater can be collected using above-ground collectors or in-ground silos. These can be installed on roofs, provided they are free from asbestos or lead. Most rainwater collection devices are available at DIY shops and do not require declaration unless you plan to pump the water indoors.

Legal considerations

According to Article 640 of France’s Civil Code, rainwater must be collected where it falls. Systems that divert water away from your property or onto neighboring properties are prohibited. Any changes to the natural flow of rainwater, such as building dykes, can lead to legal disputes and interventions from local authorities.

Penalties for Misuse

Mixing collected rainwater with the public water supply is strictly prohibited and can result in severe penalties. Ensuring that collected rainwater does not enter the public system is crucial to avoid contamination and legal issues.

Applying these insights in the UK

While the UK currently has fewer formal regulations on rainwater collection, adopting similar guidelines can enhance safety and efficiency. As a leading supplier in the UK, we ensure our water butts meet the highest standards and provide clear instructions for installation and use.

By promoting best practices and offering high-quality products, we aim to make rainwater collection a standard feature in UK households. This not only supports sustainable living but also helps reduce water bills and conserve our precious water resources.

Join us in our mission to equip every UK household with a water butt.

Together, we can make a significant impact on the environment and our communities, one drop at a time.