Industry insights

Why Does Water In London Taste Different To Other Areas Of The UK?

2 min read

By Matt Stimpson |  Published

Everyone loves a glass of cool, thirst-quenching water straight from the tap. But though UK tap water is highly regulated for safety, its taste can differ from region to region. And as London and the south-east is a hard water area, that can affect taste more than anything else. But a water cooler can give you the pure, fresh taste you want.

What is ‘hard water’?

Water is fluid, so it can’t be hard, can it? Water’s ‘hardness’ is indicated by its taste and how it’s categorised from region to region. All across the UK, tap water is generally divided into three categories: hard, medium, or soft. With tap water coming from two main sources – surface water and groundwater – this is where differences in taste can happen.

Surface water comes from large, open sources such as lakes, rivers, and reservoirs and contains fewer minerals while being naturally higher in acidity. Groundwater makes its way up to the surface through the underground chalk or limestone, collecting high levels of mineral content, including calcium and potassium, along the way giving water from certain regions its ‘hard’, distinctive taste.

It’s a matter of taste

While much of the water in the UK is classed as soft, eastern Wales and the West Midlands are largely medium water regions. But southern and southeast regions, including London, are almost entirely hard water areas. According to Thames Water, 65% of the area’s water supply is sourced “from local rivers and 35% from natural underground reservoirs, meaning it passes through soft chalky limestone several times”.

All surface and groundwaters need to go through a rigorous treatment process and it’s here that Chlorine is added to the mix to prevent contamination. It’s a combination of all these things that can affect how London water ‘tastes’. But ‘taste’ can be subjective. Our palettes can influence the ‘flavour’ we experience, just like any other food or drink.

Having passed multiple stringent tests before reaching the tap in your home, while London tap water might taste different to Exeter or Edinburgh water, it’s completely safe to drink.

Your choice of London water cooler

So what happens if you really don’t like the taste of the London tap water? To eradicate much of its offending taste and flavour, more and more businesses – and even homes – are investing in a range of bottled water coolers or mains fed water coolers, as a fresh-tasting water alternative.

Plumbed directly into your water supply, a mains fed water cooler can give you chilled, ambient, or hot water. And featuring a built-in mechanical and carbon filtration system, it removes any trace plastics while reducing the causes of bad taste and odours.

Or, a bottled water cooler gives you pure filtered, naturally sourced spring water straight from our underground source, for a delicately refreshing chilled or ambient taste, with our 13 or 18.9-litre recyclable water bottles.

Contact Thirsty Work

However you think London’s water tastes, your choice of a Thirsty Work water cooler will guarantee you and your friends, family, staff, colleagues, or crew, will be fully hydrated with the purest water.

For more information on all our water coolers, service plans, and fast same or next day deliveries across London and the south-east, call our customer service team on 02080 498 501 or email us at for your free quote or to start your free trial today.

Your local Thirsty Work water delivery service covers all areas of North, South, East and West London, and surrounding areas. We aim to deliver water and cup supplies within 2 - 3 working days from your local delivery depot. 

Call us on: 02080 498 501