Tap Water (by )

Being pregnant I am finding myself getting stupidly hungry and stuff and whilst out in Gloucester I decided to get a meal in the food court of Eastgate Shopping Center. My parents where buying drinks but I just wanted tap water - I often ask for tap water even when I am drinking another drink so was shocked to be told they were now charging for it! 30p a cup!

I was shocked and said I didn't think that was legal but ended up buying a bottle of water in the end. This was mineral water which a) often contains salts and things which I was told you should avoid during pregnancy and b) comes in a plastic bottle which is bad for the environment.

They said it was due to inflation that they where having to charge, but even if they gave it to me in a disposible cup with ice it not cost 30p!

Anyway I came home and looked it up and was sickened to find out that UK law doesn't insist on tap water being free but rather is put into clauses on specific places such as pubs and clubs. And that Defra have been promoting a free drinking water policy.

I live in a country were the tap water is not only safe to drink but of a high quality and the resturants are generally not on meters so they pay a base rate for the water - which they need to do all their cooking and washing up!

Now my main concern is - how is this not a law? When we have so many laws? And secondly is there some older law - which some people seem to believe there is, dating from the Temprance movement where free water is to be served?

I thought the law said that even if someone turned up on my doorstep I would have to provide them with free water to drink.

Oh and the most stupid thing about the meal I had? The little packets of salt that some places charge 5p for where free. So we had free salt but no free water?!? This seems incredibly insane to me.


  • By @ndy, Wed 29th Sep 2010 @ 9:28 am

    Soon they'll be putting extra salt in the water to make you order more... like they do with chips. 😉

    I'm totally stubborn enough to have left the shop and found somewhere else. I think my hunger overrules my stubbornness sometimes tho'.

    Just Don't Go Back!

  • By sarah, Wed 29th Sep 2010 @ 10:25 am

    Ah I have managed something better than that - I have contacted the shopping center using my google-fu and twitter-sway and they are now not going to charge for tap water! I am about to write a follow up post!

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