Wessex Water is the first water company to be praised for the quality and development of its scientists who test water to ensure it meets regulatory standards.

The Science Council awarded the firm the CPD Approved Employer status to recognise its commitment to good practice in employer learning and development schemes.

The team, based at Wessex Water’s scientific centre at Saltford, near Bath, regularly samples water from the region to ensure the high quality drinking water to customers.

It also tests treated waste water before the company returns it to the environment to ensure healthy rivers and sea is maintained across the region including Wiltshire, Somerset, Dorset, Bristol and Bath.

Ali Orr, registrar at the Science Council, said: “The approval panel was particularly impressed with the quality of the Scientific Centre staff and their commitment to developing personally and professionally.”

About 70 staff work at Wessex Water’s scientific centre, which carries out one million tests a year on water and waste water samples.

The company provides sampling and analytical services to local authorities, industrial companies and environmental consultants.