Categories and criteria

This year’s UK Water Efficiency Awards include six themed categories, four exemplar project categories. You may enter your project into more than one category.

Please read the details below before submitting your entry; further information is included on the Entry Form.

For each category there will be one Winner and one Runner-up, except for the exemplar projects and the Clare Ridgewell award.

Across all categories, judges will be looking for projects that demonstrate the greatest achievements in the following areas: 

Immediate outcomes

Partnership and collaboration



Themed categories

In addition to the above, for each themed category, judges also will be looking for the following: 

Built Environment

Projects that make use of proven water efficiency technologies (including, e.g., fixtures and fittings or rainwater/greywater systems) in refurbishment and/or retrofit of existing homes, or in new build.

Business and Industry

Projects that save water and save money for private sector companies; projects that seek to engage employees with water efficiency.

Community and Education

Projects that raise awareness and celebrate the importance of water to local communities. Projects that seek to, for example, influence water-using behaviours, encourage uptake of home visit retrofit offers and/or raise awareness of our impact on the natural water environment; projects that demonstrate an understanding of their target audience(s) and/or have used research to inform the development of their initiative.

Farming and Horticulture

Projects that demonstrate good practice in water-efficient land management, from gardening and landscaping, to agriculture including use of water efficiency technologies and methods. Projects that go beyond simple good practice, for example, consider water-smart crop selection, water footprinting or local water environmental improvements please tell us.


Projects that develop, test or trial a new idea, such as an innovative approach to engaging water customers or a tool, service or device which helps customers in a domestic or non-domestic setting to be more water efficient; entrants must explain how their project is innovative and how it will help advance water efficiency in the UK.

Research and Evaluation

Projects that seek to solve water efficiency challenges and/or better understand the value of water efficiency interventions.

Clare Ridgewell Award

Individuals who have made an outstanding contribution in the field of water efficiency.


Exemplar projects

The Exemplar Project awards specifically recognise water efficiency achievements in Northern Ireland, Scotland, Wales, and England and seek to highlight the multiple social, environmental and economic benefits of water efficiency. Projects must be delivered in these areas and must involve at least one organisation whose registered address is in these areas.