Abstraction Licence Application 

Igne has over 350 years of combined experience in the drilling industry. We know that abstraction licencing applications can be daunting and complicated: but we are here to take the stress off your hands by supporting you with your application.


How can Igne help with your licencing application?

  • Free consultation: We will start by conducting a free consultation to understand your needs and to assess the feasibility of your project. We will also discuss the borehole licencing process and explain what, if anything, you need to do to complete your application.  If you abstract 20 cubic metres or less a day you are unlikely to need an abstraction licence
  • Site survey: Once we have a good understanding of your needs, we will conduct a site survey to assess the suitability of your site for a borehole. We will also identify any potential risks or challenges.
  • Application form: We can help you to complete the borehole abstraction licencing application form. We will ensure that all of the required information is provided accurately and completely.
  • Supporting documentation: We will help you to gather the supporting documentation required for your application. This may include geological data, water quality data, and environmental impact assessments.
  • Submission of application: Once your application is complete, we can submit it to the Environment Agency on your behalf. We will track the progress of your application and keep you updated on any developments.
  • Post-submission support: If your application is successful, we can help you to obtain the necessary permits and to commence drilling. We can also provide ongoing support and advice throughout the life of your borehole.

Obtaining a water abstraction licence

As of April 2005, abstractions of less than 20m3/day do not require licensing by the Environment Agency. If the abstraction is greater than 20m3/day a water abstraction licence will be required, and this is something we can manage for you as it can be a protracted affair to apply, and its complexity is often daunting.

Please note, the Environment Agency does have the authority to set a lower limit for an abstraction licence in certain areas of the country, and we are obliged to inform the British Geological Survey of the construction of any boreholes greater than 15m in depth.

If you need us to, we will quote you for each stage of the follow process separately – but rest assured, we will ease your path from obtaining an abstraction licence to having a fully operational borehole and our experience will ensure that the length of the process is minimised and that your water bill savings start as soon as possible.

Obtaining a water abstraction licence and installing a borehole: 6 steps to your private water supply:

  • Stage 1: Section 32 Application to the Environment Agency (EA)- Submit Section 32 to the EA requesting permission to drill and test pump a borehole. A map of 1:10000 or greater must be marked with the exact position of the borehole and details given of the underlying geological sequence, depth, diameter, method of construction, disposal of waste, projected flow rates etc.  WB+AD Morgan can undertake all this for you on receipt of the map.
  • Stage 2: Water features survey (WFS) - Undertake water features survey to the satisfaction of the EA detailing all existing ground water and surface water features within a radius defined by them. This must encompass water wells, springs, boreholes, ponds, rivers, wetland features and any other area of interest that could possibly have a bearing on this application.
  • Stage 3: Drilling of borehole and pump installation - These works cannot be undertaken until we are in receipt of the requisite consents from the EA.
  • Stage 4: Pump testing and associated monitoring - Undertake pump test of borehole and monitor all sources identified by the water features survey. Duration of pump test will be determined by the EA. This stage of the process is undertaken jointly between you and us. The recording of data upon start-up is intensive and we find that input during this early stage is invaluable.
  • Stage 5: Analysis of test pumping data - Undertake analysis of all test pumping data from pumping well and monitoring points. Some regions of the EA will undertake this service In-house and make no charge: however, be aware that certain areas will not!  We can also provide this service in a format that is acceptable to the EA.
  • Stage 6: Advertising - Advertise abstraction in local press and the London Gazette. Again, this needs to be precise in its presentation—any variation or deviation will not be acceptable to the EA.

What next?

Upon submission of the Section 32, the Environment Agency should respond with the radius for the water features survey within 15 days.  

Allow 7 days for the WFS to be undertaken and the report submitted to the EA. The EA should process this within a further 15 days. No engineering work must start prior to receipt of the drilling consent.

The EA request 7 days’ notice prior to commencement of drilling. The EA request 14 days’ notice prior to commencement of test pumping.  The EA then have 3 months in which to decide a licence.

Why choose Igne?

  • Expertise: We have over 350 years of combined experience in the borehole drilling industry, and we have a team of highly skilled and experienced professionals.
  • Efficiency: We can help you to complete your borehole licencing application quickly and efficiently.
  • Accuracy: We will ensure that your application is complete and accurate, and that all of the required information is provided.
  • Support: We will provide you with support and guidance throughout the borehole licencing process, from the initial consultation to the post-submission stage.

If you are looking for help with your borehole licencing application, please contact Igne today. We would be happy to discuss your needs and provide you with a free consultation.