Internal restructuring
United Kingdom
Location of affected unit(s)
Water Supply; Sewerage, Waste Management And Remediation Activities
Water Collection, Treatment And Supply
36 - Water collection, treatment and supply

1,500 jobs
Number of planned job losses
Job loss
Announcement Date
29 August 2006
Employment effect (start)
1 September 2006
Foreseen end date
31 December 2010


Thames Water, the company that supplies London residents and businesses with water, plans to cut a quarter of its workforce in a move that could see 300 posts axed every year up to 2010. The cuts come as the owner of Thames Water, the German utility giant RWE, prepares to sell the company.

The chief executive of Thames Water, Jeremy Pelczer, said in an email to staff: 'Any business has to be more efficient than its competitors in order to secure a long-term future. ... As we seek to drive the efficiencies needed to meet our goals, some of them will come through smarter procurement but some will come from different ways of working which will involve job cuts. This may lead to a head count reduction of up to 25% by early 2010. To put that in context, it would mean an average of around 300 people per year.'

Thames said compulsory redundancies would be kept to a minimum and voluntary cutbacks would be considered. The GMB union said it would be seeking reassurances from the company on several issues. The GMB official Kelly Rogers said: 'We will seek to ensure that no frontline jobs are cut and that investment continues to improve the service to customers. We will also seek an assurance that there will be no compulsory redundancies.'


  • 29 August 2006: The Guardian
  • 29 August 2006: BBC News


Eurofound (2006), Thames Water, Internal restructuring in United Kingdom, factsheet number 63997, European Restructuring Monitor. Dublin, https://restructuringeventsprod.azurewebsites.net/restructuring-events/detail/63997.